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  • Writer's pictureThe Hon. Paul Toole MP


Young people are being encouraged to skill up this summer and support the regions with 10,000 free training places across more than 800 courses now available to study.

The NSW Government today launched its Summer Skills program, offering free training in critical industries delivered by TAFE NSW and 120 registered training providers.

Deputy Premier and Minister for Regional NSW Paul Toole said in-demand short courses including construction, agriculture, hospitality, animal studies, shearing and wool harvesting, were available to study for free for people aged 16-24 years.

“We’re encouraging young people to go bush and combine learning with on-the-job experience this summer to support regional industries,” Mr Toole said.

“Now is the perfect time to get out, go and pick fruit in the regions, learn how to make a great coffee working for a local cafe or lend a hand to our farmers with free training funded by the NSW Government.”

Minister for Skills and Tertiary Education Geoff Lee said it was a great opportunity for young people to take advantage of new freedoms in NSW.

“It’s been a challenging period especially for our young people, which is why we’re committed to skilling them up to take on a job anywhere in NSW ahead of a bumper summer,” Mr Lee said.

“This is about giving school leavers a leg up in their career and the opportunity to put their skills to use after what has been a challenging year.”

Minister for Regional Youth Bronnie Taylor said the program will ensure young people have the confidence and skills they need for the next steps in their life.

“Our young people have really felt the impacts of this pandemic, whether it was having to learn from home, losing their part-time job or not being able to catch up with their mates,” Mrs Taylor said.

“This program is great news for our young people and will open so many future employment opportunities close to home, ensuring our rural and regional communities continue to thrive.”

Celebrity Chef and Thankful4Farmers ambassador Matt Moran said encouraging young people to explore the regions and learn new skills was a great solution to the skills shortages the regions are facing.

“This is a fantastic opportunity to have a fun-filled adventure in our backyard, while also making a real difference in the community, learning valuable skills and forging new friendships along the way,” Mr Moran said.

Summer Skills program is funded under the joint Federal and State JobTrainer program and is available to people aged 16 to 24 who have left school and are living or working in NSW.

Summer Skills short courses include:

 Accounting

 Agriculture

 Animal Studies

 Hospitality

 Construction

 Process Manufacturing

 Transport and Logistics

 Shearing and Wool Harvesting

 Drone Essentials

 Care Roles Skillset

For more information and to enrol, visit

Young people looking for a gap year working in regional NSW can find out about work opportunities across the state by visiting:


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