CQUniversity marks 10 years of TAFE

29 June 2024
Decorative graphic with dark blue background and CQU logo with centre feature reading
CQUniversity has this week celebrated 10 years since it merged with CQ TAFE

By Jocelyn Sticklen

CQUniversity has this week celebrated 10 years since it merged with CQ TAFE, establishing Queensland’s first and only dual sector university and becoming the official public provider of TAFE in Central Queensland. 

A decade on from the history-making merger, CQUniversity has expanded its vocational and higher education study options and now delivers 250 plus courses from Certificate to PhD level to more than 30,000 students.

The University has also built new partnerships with industry and invested more than $80 million in new and upgraded training facilities in Emerald, Gladstone, Mackay and Rockhampton. 

Three young people in high-vis clothing stand and talk to each other on a path outside the CQU Mackay Ooralea campus TAFE Trades Training Centre
The Mackay Ooralea campus TAFE Trades Training Centre was constructed just before the CQU and CQ TAFE merged in 2014

CQUniversity’s Vice-Chancellor and President Professor Nick Klomp explained that the merger of the University with CQ TAFE has reinforced the importance of all levels of education and training, improving pathways between different levels of study in the region.

“The merger on 1 July 2014, was a history-making moment for education in Queensland as it bought together more than 140 years of combined experience in the delivery of education and training in Central Queensland. 

“While dual sector universities had been established in other parts of Australia, it was an unprecedented step in Queensland and has revolutionised the way we deliver vocational training and higher education in the region,” Professor Klomp said. 

“Not only have we been able to develop more streamlined pathways between different levels of study, but we have also been able to build closer ties with industry, to gain a deeper understanding of their skills and workforce needs."

A young woman stands in the foreground of a clinical setting holing a thermometer. Three others are pictured in the background taking someone's blood pressure.
CQUniversity now delivers more than 250 courses from Certificate to PhD level 

Professor Klomp also acknowledged that the merger of the two institutions did not come without challenges but that everyone at the University should feel proud of what has been achieved in the past 10 years.

“As can be expected, merging two large institutions has not been without challenges, but over the past 10 years we have witnessed some incredible achievements and I think we can feel proud of the solutions we have delivered to overcome operational challenges and increase participation in vocational education and training. 

“The merger was a massive undertaking during the initial phase, but the work didn’t stop there, in fact, all our teams across the University continue to work hard to deliver high quality courses and experiences. 

“We also continue to invest in systems, processes and facilities to improve the experiences of our students, as well as our staff, community and industry stakeholders.

“As a dual sector university, CQUniversity plays a very important role in delivering skills and knowledge to current and future workforces in the Central Queensland region and beyond and we take our responsibility very seriously,” Professor Klomp said.

CQUniversity’s TAFE offerings now include short courses and Certificate I, II, III and IV courses and apprenticeships and TAFE diplomas. Study areas include Allied Health, Community Services, Project Management, Information Technology, Nursing, Safety, Fitness, Horticulture and Science, Trades, Business, Education and Childcare, Legal and Justice Studies, Hair and Beauty, Hospitality and Cookery and Visual Arts. 

There are currently more than 11,000 students enrolled in a TAFE qualification at CQUniversity, representing about one-third of the University’s total student population. 

More information about CQUniversity’s TAFE offerings can be found at on the CQUniversity TAFE courses, careers and information page.

Two men are pictured in a workshop setting. Both wear PPE. One is holding a technical tool used in automotive diagnostics.
Trade related courses continue to be a popular choice across the Central Queensland region