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July 28, 2009

Jobless workers to benefit from 1,500 free college places

Jobless workers in Kildare could be among those who benefit from a free part-time undergraduate college course targeted at the unemployed this September according to Minister for State for Older People and local Fianna Fail TD Áine Brady.

“The new college places will be on undergraduate certificate and degree-level programmes and will span the sciences, business, engineering and technology sectors.”

“The new college places are designed to retrain and upskill workers.”

“The places will be co-funded by the Department of Education and the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment.”

“Thirteen institutes of technology, four universities and the National College of Ireland are part of this initiative specifically aimed at upskilling and reskilling workers for jobs in the sectors of the economy considered key to tackling the recession and driving economic growth.”

“Those who are interested in the courses need to contact their local college directly and should know that they will be asked to confirm that they have claimed jobseeker’s payment for the previous six months or provide a copy of the RP50 for confirming their entitlement to statutory redundancy.”

“I am hopeful that the fact that applicants will be entitled to retain their social welfare payments while on the course will assist potential students. If a student gets a job before their course finishes will not have to pay tuition costs for that academic year.”

“The courses that have been selected for the unemployed workers will meet identified skills needs so as to increase the likelihood for future employment. Courses will be in good manufacturing practice and technology, supply chain management, electronic and renewable energy engineering, environmental and sustainable energy systems, biopharmaceutical and healthcare science, information technology management, business information systems and financial services.”

“Anyone interested can contact their local FÁS office or local Social Welfare Office for further details,” concluded Minister Brady.