EDUCATION provider GOTAFE will take a repurposed semi-trailer on the road in an effort to provide better access to training and career counselling for jobseekers in regional Victoria.
The GOTAFE mobile campus features a client reception area, private career counselling space, workshop and seminar space, and a computer lab.
GOTAFE, which has campuses in Seymour and Wallan as well as other parts of northern Victoria, plans to take the mobile campus across the state during the next three years, with visits to Mitchell and Macedon Ranges shires as well as local government areas in Alpine, Benalla, Campaspe, Gannawarra, Hume, Indigo, Mansfield, Moira, Murrindindi, Shepparton, Strathbogie and Towong.
There are plans for the campus to cater to an additional 200,000 northern Victorians including prospective students, jobseekers, industry and community groups, by reducing the need for them to travel long distances or relocate for the services they need.
GOTAFE chief executive Travis Heeney said the mobile campus would also assist regional communities and industry, which he said were facing unprecedented social and economic challenges heightened by the COVID-19 pandemic.
“GOTAFE is committed to playing a lead role in supporting these communities to respond to these challenges,” he said.
“At the heart of the mobile campus is hope to bridge the gap between our communities and deliver critical employment and education services, regardless of location, access and financial barriers.”
GOTAFE will work in partnership with local and state governments to link with job active networks and financial support services, aiming to centre the community in its service delivery.
The State Government invested $667,000 into the mobile campus project in partnership with GOTAFE and La Trobe University.
Member for Northern Victoria Jaclyn Symes said it was a great result for people living in the region.
“This mobile campus will be a one-stop-shop for skills, training and career advice – reaching every corner of the north east and giving locals better access to our world-class training system,” she said.
Minister for Training and Skills Gayle Tierney said the mobile campus would provide more options for jobseekers and prospective students.
“Every Victorian deserves equal access to high-quality training and a pathway to the job they want, no matter where they live – and that’s what GOTAFE’s new Mobile Campus and Skills and Jobs Centre will deliver,” she said.
Mr Heeney said the project recognised that some students were disadvantaged by a lack of transport options, which affected their access to education and other GOTAFE services.
People can find more information about GOTAFE’s mobile campus, including future destinations, by visiting www.gotafe.vic.edu.au.