CQUni and The MaraWay collaborate to provide skills and knowledge to Cairns community

Published:24 March 2020

CQUniversity and The MaraWay have been working together to improve employment and training prospects for people in the Cairns region. (Top) StudentsHarjit Kaur and Muna Monger and (Bottom) The Maraway Training Team (L-R): Zaneta Cook, Serena Pleydell, Jodie Burke and Helen Wood.

A training partnership between CQUniversity and The MaraWay will create opportunities to improve the employment prospects of men and women in the Cairns region, with The MaraWay providing expertise in supporting people who may have barriers to training and employment.

The MaraWay is an Indigenous corporation helping all people from all backgrounds across the Cairns community.

The MaraWay, which formed in 2002, helps strengthen communities by empowering individuals and tackling tough social challenges.

CEO Andrea Jackson said the organisation has partnered with CQUni to improve opportunities for students and broaden the range of courses available to their students over time.

“CQUniversity is aligned well with The MaraWay both strategically and in our values,” Andrea said.

“(Through this arrangement) we are able to continue providing supportive, face to face training while incorporating online learning resources to enhance the digital literacy of our students. Our partnership with CQUniversity will help break down the psychological barriers many students have about their ability to undertake further study at university. Already we have students keen to enrol in undergraduate studies with CQUni once they have completed their vocational education qualifications at The MaraWay.”

Andrea said currently, their students were undertaking training in Early Childhood Education and Care and Individual Support (Aged Care). She said it is expected that 176 new students would undertake the studies in 2020.

CQUniversity Pro Vice-Chancellor VET Operations and Growth Peter Heilbuth said the partnership was the perfect fit for the University’s values and vision around Indigenous education.

“In particular, The MaraWay actively supports first in family students and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students - two cohorts that CQUni actively engages with and supports across its regional footprint,” Peter said.

“Further, the unique delivery model offered by The MaraWay provides valuable opportunities to expand the partnership in the future, to encompass social innovation and research, measuring student outcomes and the impact of The MaraWay approach on student lives, in particular their careers.”

He said The MaraWay students would receive a CQUniversity qualification at the end of their studies.

“By collaborating with The MaraWay, the students, who otherwise might have believed VET training was not available to them, now have a number of training pathways open to them,” he said.

“They will graduate as a competent student, able to add immediate value to their chosen industry or, if they choose to do so, pursue further studies directly with CQUni with confidence.”