The unemployment numbers are clear for our region – we have very low unemployment and, for most people, jobs are easy to come by. However, taking that next step up the ladder is harder, and many organisations say finding people with the right skills isn't easy.
With local university enrolments closed for second semester, how can people learn what they need here, without waiting? Time is precious.
Earning your degree in business, accounting, management, ICT or nursing is possible right now, with programmes starting at UCOL at the end of July. Not to mention our diploma programmes, which include agriculture, fine furniture design, early childhood education, and vet nursing to name a few. There is still time on the clock to complete your enrolment if you act now.
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Government funding also means that there's never been a better time. Right now the Targeted Training and Apprenticeship Fund (TTAF, covering tuition for a wide range of courses) and first-year fees free means we have learners jumping into study with their tuition covered.
TTAF in particular wraps up next year, so why not get in before it's gone? Tradies are enjoying busy times and are looking for people with skills. Make a start now and build your future in construction, ICT, engineering, health and wellbeing, enrolled nursing, farm management and more before the year is over.
My advice? Think about what will get you ahead in your career, and prioritise it. Whether it's a top-up grad diploma, degree, certificate or just one paper in particular, it's up to you.
We have part-time study, online, on campus or a blend of options available, because we know that learning isn't just about a classroom. Talk to our team – with us, you don't have to wait until 2022 to get your goals moving.
• Dr Linda Sissons is chief executive of UCOL