Monday, December 12, 2011

$73.8m funding boost for CQUniversity

It’s been a long time coming, but we finally have confirmation!

It was extremely pleasing to receive official word from the Commonwealth Government last week regarding our funding application for higher education investment monies.

CQUniversity has received $73.8m, part of a total pool of $377m from the Structural Adjustment Fund (SAF) and Education Investment Fund (EIF) for 2011.

These funds will allow the University to enter its next phase of development and is a major step forward in the process to revolutionise post-schooling education to better meet the unique skills needs of this region.

At a special briefing event held this morning to mark the funding announcement, it was fantastic to be joined by so many supporters such as Member for Capricornia Kirsten Livermore and Central Queensland Institute of TAFE Director Gary Kinnon. A large crowd of university and TAFE staff joined with community members, Rockhampton region Mayor, Councillors and representatives from Capricorn Enterprise, the CQ NRL Bid and Central Queensland Indigenous Development to hear how the funding would be utilised.

There are several major projects set to benefit from these funds:

• readying the university for our proposed merger with Central Queensland Institute of TAFE, including new interactive teaching and learning spaces across the numerous CQIT and CQUniversity sites in Central Queensland, to allow for better interaction between campuses;
• a new state-of-the-art engineering precinct at CQUniversity Mackay which will feature purpose-built workshops and learning centres; and
• a further stage of the public-access allied health clinic at CQUniversity Rockhampton.

I believe this funding announcement demonstrates just how crucial CQUniversity is to the national higher education sector and to the communities of the booming Central Queensland region.

These funds represent one fifth of the overall SAF/EIF funding pool for 2011, which is a massive vote of confidence from the Government in the CQUniversity, and our plans for dual-sector status and the development of a world-class engineering school in Mackay.

I look forward to sharing more details about these projects as they progress, but for now, I would like to express my thanks to the Commonwealth Government for its foresight in recognising the immense contribution a dual-sector university, offering world-class engineering programs, will make to a region like Central Queensland and to the many staff who helped put this funding application together – it has certainly been worth the effort.

No comments: