Regional TAFE upgrades to boost skills and jobs for COVID-19 recovery plan

More than $1.17 million in construction projects will revitalise regional TAFE campuses to ensure the state’s post COVID-19 workforce has access to world class training facilities.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said upgrades to campuses in Bohle, Burdekin, Bowen and Cannonvale – part of the second stage of the Government’s Unite and Recover for Queensland Jobs plan – highlight the important role skills and training will play in the state’s economic recovery.

“Our recovery plan for Queensland is all about creating jobs and investing in future proofing infrastructure so we have the skills for more jobs in more industries,” Ms Palaszczuk said.

“Ensuring we have the skilled workforce Queensland needs for the jobs now and into the future will help our state continue to move on from the pandemic.”

Minister for Training and Skills Development Shannon Fentiman said the new training facilities in regional TAFE campuses will help support future growth in student numbers.

“This is all part of our plan to invest in local skills and jobs,” Ms Fentiman said.

Campus upgrades include:

  • Bohle TAFE is getting a new $375,000 Maker Space Innovation Hub to provide education and training areas in advancing technology.
  • Bowen TAFE will receive $200,000 to establish a student-industry collaborative learning centre to support community and healthcare training and high-end manufacturing activities.
  • Burdekin TAFE will see a new $350,000 student-industry collaborative learning centre to support community services and early childhood education and training to ensure provision of high standard personal care services.
  • Cannonvale TAFE will build a $250,000 student-industry collaborative learning centre to support major tourism and community and heath care training and high-end manufacturing activities.

Member for Townsville Scott Stewart said the new Maker Space Innovation hub will be a game changer for local students.

“This hub will provide a space that encourages our young students to embrace innovative digital technologies and that fosters entrepreneurial activities,” Mr Stewart said.

Member for Mackay Julieanne Gilbert welcomed the investment in the Cannonvale TAFE.

“We know we need more skilled workers for our region’s growing healthcare and manufacturing industries,” Ms Gilbert said.

“I’m thrilled to also see the new learning centre will foster the skills for our local tourism industry.”

The Minister said one of the most important ways to help rebuild the economy is to support our apprentices and boost skills and training by investing in world class infrastructure.

“We want to see more young Queenslanders take up an apprenticeship or traineeship,” Ms Fentiman said.

“Our free apprenticeships for under 21s initiative has already supported more than 18,000 young Queenslanders to undertake an apprenticeship or traineeship for free.

“This is a fantastic result and we are ahead of our goal of supporting 60,000 Queensland free apprentices by 2023.”

“Now more than ever we want Queenslanders to be able to gain a valuable qualification and build a career in the industries where we know there will be jobs.”

In 2019-20 the Palaszczuk government has more than doubled investment in TAFE facilities to more than $105 million to ensure our infrastructure program keeps track with training demand.

/Public Release. View in full here.