Authorities are working to address regional job shortages in health care and social assistance with a $2.15 million work-readiness program.
Federation University, Ballarat Health Service and Wimmera Health Care will partner on the Grampians Regional Health Work Readiness Program to train about 150 students a year in the skills they need to step in to the health care industry.
The goal of the project is to provide students with training and employment pathways, and connect employers with new graduates, to help keep young people in regional Victoria where the skills shortage is greatest.
Health care and social assistance are recognised occupations with skills shortages across Australia, particularly in regional areas, with at least 99 jobs currently advertised in Ballarat and the Central Highlands, and 48 in the Grampians region in the health sector alone.
"The Grampians project provides new flexible study pathways for regional students to build their qualifications and experiences, supported by the university's pathway with healthcare providers,” said FedUni vice chancellor Professor Helen Bartlett.
"This initiative will enhance employment opportunities in the healthcare sector for many regional students."
The $2.15 million project was part of $4.6 million in state funding announced last week at Federation University for student support services and further training.
The university also received $2.11 million in Community Service Funding across its Victorian TAFE campuses to enhance student literacy and numeracy support, provide extra help with study, additional learning spaces and specific support for Koorie learners and staff, people with a disability, and culturally and linguistically diverse students.
“The Community Service Funding will allow us to provide greater literacy and numeracy support to our TAFE students,” Professor Bartlett said.
Students in hospitality and building design also received a boost with almost $550,000 in funding to expand the Diploma of Hospitality Management, Advanced Diploma of Building Design (architectural), and certificate III in individual support.
“This funding boost is about matching training in the region with industry demand and giving students in Ballarat the support they need to get a qualification and get a job,” said minister for training and skills Gayle Tierney.
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