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CQUni congratulates Pioneer High’s leap into tertiary education

Published:19 June 2015

Pioneer State High School LEAP students L-R Vanique Malayta, Lara Feenaghty, Riley Jackson, Aimee Clark, Bayden Jacobs with Principal Joel Buccholz and CQUniversity Deputy Vice-Chancellor Professor Pierre Viljoen.

CQUniversity is looking forward to extending its partnership with Pioneer State High School, which has recently secured a Queensland Government Collaboration and Innovation Fund grant of $475,000.

The grant will be used to expand the school’s innovative enrichment program which has been developed in partnership with CQUniversity.

The Learning Excellence at Pioneer (LEAP) program has been operating for two years and will now be expanded across additional year levels at the school.

“This funding will allow the expansion of our existing program to include a focus on the exciting and emerging area of mechatronics” said Pioneer High principal, Joel Buchholz.

“We will be developing state-of-the art facilities that will allow students to undertake real-life projects in partnership with CQUniversity and local industry.”

“Students will have access to a range of robotics and related technology that allow them to explore the emerging field of mechatronics, which has incredible potential for application in the local engineering and mining sectors.”

Students will also be able to link in to university lectures via a study hub to be established at the school.

“Students will be able to actively participate in university lectures and interact online with university staff and students,” said Mr Buchholz.

“Over time, these facilities will also open up further study options to others in the wider community. Our vision is for Pioneer to become an access point, linking the local community to CQUniversity.”

“This funding will help to expand the strong partnership that has been established between CQUniversity and Pioneer High,” said CQUniversity Deputy Vice-Chancellor Pierre Viljoen.

“The expanded program will provide a clear pathway for students from high school into the programs offered at CQUniversity’s new $17 million Engineering facility.”

“CQUniversity Mackay Ooralea will soon head up the new mechatronics stream and the expanded LEAP program will provide a hands-on introduction to this emerging field.”

The Collaboration and Innovation Fund provides Queensland state schools with the opportunity to design creative, distinctive and collaborative projects that add further depth and quality to the education offered to students. $8 million in funding has been shared across projects at 21 schools across the state. Funding will be made available to schools on 22 June.

Pioneer High is the only school between Bundaberg and Cairns to secure funding through the highly competitive Collaboration and Innovation Fund. Over 100 schools applied for a share of the $8 million available.