Support for Wimmera TAFE
Federation University’s Wimmera campus has had a major boost with the State Government providing it with $1.1-million in project funding.
Training and Skills Minister Gayle Tierney visited the campus to announce the money for five projects as part of the government’s Regional and Specialist Training Fund.
The allocation is designed to provide students with access to better training opportunities to get skills for indemand jobs across the region.
Ms Tierney said the funding would provide two traineeship qualifications – the Diploma of Early Childhood Education and Care, and Certificate III in Early Childhood Education and Care – to help the Wimmera overcome shortages of qualified staff in childcare centres, kindergartens and for out-of-school-hours and holiday programs.
She said Feduni TAFE was targeting regional students with qualifications to develop skills as well as new students keen to pursue a career in earlychildhood education.
From 2020, these courses will also be added to the government’s free TAFE list and will support the government’s roll-out of three-year-old kindergarten.
The government is rolling out a program that provides three-year-old children with access to 15 hours of funded kindergarten programs. Many areas in the Wimmera will be the first to access the program.
Ms Tierney added that a traineeship program, supported through a Regional and Specialist Training Fund, was allowing Individual Support Certificate students to ‘earn while they learn’, creating incentives for people to increase skills in the areas of aged and disability care.
“This project is supporting careerchangers who normally can’t afford to leave work to study full time and enter the health sector,” she said.
The university is providing a traineeship program in partnership with West Wimmera Health Services in Nhill.
While in Horsham, Minister Tierney opened a new hothouse at the campus, a project also funded through the Regional and Specialist Training Fund.
The hothouse is based on a Certificate III in Horticulture course.
Feduni TAFE has also developed online interactive learning opportunities as part of the Certificate II in Electrotechnology to support an emerging workforce in telecommunications and electrical industries.
“Each of these projects respond directly to local demands for skills in the Wimmera and Grampians regions, meaning graduates can find a great job and hit the ground running as soon as they are employed,” Ms Tierney said.
Federation University Australia welcomed the funding, which allows Feduni TAFE to provide a traineeship in partnership with West Wimmera Health Services in Nhill.
Federation TAFE has about 288 students at its Horsham campus and is the largest vocational education and training provider in western Victoria.
Vice-chancellor and president Professor Helen Bartlett said the university worked closely with employers across the Wimmera and western Victoria to ensure it was training students in areas where there was a demand for skilled workers.
“This funding will allow us to give more people in the Wimmera the opportunity to train for jobs in the horticulture, disability and aged care, childcare, electrical and telecommunications industries,” she said.
CAMPUS WIN: From left, Federation University Australia vice-chancellor Professor Helen Bartlett, Victorian Training and Skills Minister Gayle Tierney open the university’s hothouse in Horsham. Students Melissa Thomas, Rita Gasparini, Marg Priestly with Payton-rose Priestly and teacher Jody Taberner are also pictured. Picture: PAUL CARRACHER