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Agricultural leaders to grow from new course

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Course participant Deneita Fewquandie, TAFE Queensland representative Jo Charters and Bundaberg Regional Council Executive Director Strategic Projects and Economic Development met to promote the new course designed to upskill agricultural workers.

A new TAFE Queensland course specifically designed to upskill the next generation of agricultural leaders is helping to strengthen and future-proof the growing Bundaberg industry.

Thirty employees from eight local agri-businesses are currently undertaking the bespoke Certificate IV in Leadership and Management course, with participants studying both online and meeting once a month to complete practical workshops.

TAFE Queensland General Manager (East Coast) Ana Rodger said the training provider had worked closely with local businesses to tailor the program to the agriculture industry and ensure their employees received the skills they need to help drive the success of their businesses well into the future.

“TAFE Queensland is committed to providing locals with the skills they need to succeed while fulfilling the training demands of our communities,” Ms Rodger said.

“The Wide Bay’s agricultural sector is thriving, with Bundaberg one of the largest producers of Queensland’s fruit and vegetables; however our consultation with industry has identified a gap in leadership and supervisor skills.

“The Bundaberg agriculture sector often needs to fill supervision roles by promoting their existing employees, and while this a great opportunity for locals, we also need to ensure they have the skills and confidence to effectively manage their staff and help lead the business that employs them to success.”

Bundaberg Regional Council Executive Director Strategic Projects and Economic Development Ben Artup welcomed the introduction of the agricultural leaders course which would be run at the new Bundaberg Ag-Tech hub.

“12 months ago we identified a gap in the delivery of this type of training for our local agri-business sector,” Mr Artup said.

“So it's great to see TAFE Queensland step in to design and deliver this new Cert IV in Leadership and Management, specifically tailored to  our local agri-business sector.

“The new training is being run at the new Bundaberg Ag-Tech hub, where a number of ag-related enterprises have already located.

“It's good to see the Ag-tech hub becoming a centre for growth of the local agricultural industry.”

According to data published by the Australian Bureau of Statistics in 2016, the value of agricultural production in Bundaberg each year is over $500 million, making it a key contributor to the region’s economy.

Ms Rodger said it is great to see local businesses really thinking about the future and investing in their employees’ skills to become agricultural leaders.

“While the sector is experiencing fantastic growth, it is incredibly important for businesses to continue developing the skills of their team. Their employees are their most valuable resource – they have the power to innovate and shape a business to grow even further,” she said.

“Quality training also has the power to boost productivity and skills, which in turn can save a business plenty of time, effort and money.”

Anyone interested in becoming an agricultural leader can find out more about TAFE Queensland’s leadership and management courses by visiting tafeqld.edu.au or calling 1300 308 233.

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