SCU gets $32m funding boost

SOUTHERN Cross University has received a $32 million funding boost under a new Federal Government funding program.

In a joint statement yesterday, Federal Education Minister Chris Evans, Page MP Janelle Saffin and Richmond MP Justine Elliot said the funding would help with the construction of a new college at the university's Gold Coast campus and broaden its appeal to students.

"This project will help Southern Cross University take the next step in its development as a regional university to strengthen its appeal to a wider range of students," Ms Saffin said.

"In partnership with North Coast TAFE and the Gold Coast Institute of TAFE, SCU College will deliver transition programs from the new building at the Gold Coast campus, and across the University's catchment area, targeting high growth, high need communities.

"The project will have an immediate impact on the north coast region of New South Wales and the Gold Coast region."

Ms Elliot said the university's Partners for the Future project would have a strong focus on face-to-face delivery, including intensive block modes for students unable to get to a campus for regular classes.

Sen Evans said the funding would help students who had studied at TAFE upgrade their qualifications to university level.

"We are committed to removing the barriers for Australians who aspire to gain a university education," Sen Evans said.

Southern Cross University vice-chancellor Peter Lee described the funding boost as an "exciting development for the University and for our communities".

"This significant investment in cutting edge technology coupled with new learning sites and TAFE partnerships in New South Wales and Queensland represents a significant advancement in education opportunities for the communities we serve," he said.

"Our innovative approach means more students can aspire to a University education.

"We will support students who have the ability, but not the level of preparedness to go to University.

"What we are providing is a highly supportive stepping stone into University for these students."

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