CQUniversity Australia announced that Australia Pacific LNG will provide $550,000 in funding to the University to develop a state-of-the-art Science Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) hub at the Gladstone Marina campus.
The formalisation of the funding agreement signals a three-year sponsorship between Australia Pacific LNG and CQUniversity to develop the project, which will be known as the Australia Pacific LNG STEM Hub.
The project will deliver an innovative STEM facility and equipment, and will also fund the delivery of an academically rigorous education program aimed at upskilling teachers in STEM subjects.
Along with this, local students and the broader community will also benefit with the hub being publically accessible.
CQUniversity’s Vice-Chancellor, Professor Scott Bowman said the new facility would place the Gladstone Region at the forefront of efforts to address the national (and international) STEM skills shortage.
“We are extremely proud to be formalising this sponsorship with Australia Pacific LNG.” Professor Bowman said.
“Through this facility, we have a goal to proactively address the growing need for STEM education and skills.
“Over a three year period, this intervention will foster and enable the growth of STEM capacity, so local people have the confidence and interest to acquire the STEM skills they need to nurture their community and achieve global competitiveness.
“It is fantastic to see a local operator with international reach investing in STEM education in regional Australia.”
Australia Pacific LNG CEO, Warwick King, said the hub would be an attractive, engaging physical space equipped with specialist STEM education resources that allow students and visitors to be hands-on with fundamental aspects of the STEM disciplines.
“We are delighted to work with CQUniversity to bring this facility to the Gladstone community,” Mr King said.
“Establishing this facility has never been more important for the Australian economy with up to 75 percent of jobs now requiring STEM skills.
“Australia Pacific LNG believes it is vitally important to improve STEM education and training in regional Australia and ensure the workforce of tomorrow is equipped with essential skills and knowledge.
“This project presents an education solution that addresses the causes of STEM knowledge gaps while creating interest and building capacity for teachers and students.”
The project will be delivered over three years, with concept design and construction of the facility to be completed in 2018.