Construction work starts on keeping trainees in Gladstone
THE way Gladstone's future tradesmen and women are trained is set to change for the better with construction underway on a $12.5-million training hub.
Gladstone will soon be the first location in Queensland to centralise higher education and vocational training facilities with work officially starting on CQUniversity's trades training centre at Gladstone Marina.
The site will be a training hub for CQU Gladstone's carpentry, fabrication, fitter and turners, electrical and instrumentation plus hair and beauty students.
CQU Gladstone Region associate vice chancellor Professor Owen Nevin said it marked a significant step following the merger of the uni and the vocational sector in 2013.
Once construction is completed at the end of the year CQU's Derby St trades students will relocate to the Gladstone Marina Campus.
"This is significant as we will be delivering all levels of vocational and higher education on the one campus... which will make our course offerings and facilities more accessible to students, industry and the community," Prof Nevin said.
"This will be a great outcome... Gladstone will be the only region in Queensland where this model of delivery is offered."
The upgrade, part of a wider redevelopment of the campus, also includes two new carparks and the renovation of engineering workshops.
It's hoped the new facility will give residents an incentive to train locally rather than leave the region.
The Federal Government committed $10million towards the project.
Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Michael McCormack said the facility would teach skills not normally catered for on most university campuses.
"By providing a range of facilities - including four workshops, teaching rooms and a hair and beauty facility featuring a salon - students will be able to get a real feel for the professions they specialise in," Mr McCormack said.
Member for Flynn Ken O'Dowd said the project was at an exciting stage.
"I'd like to see our people trained here locally," Mr O'Dowd said.
"The jobs are local and I'd like to see people come from local areas (because) that's the way you build a liveable city."