The project, which will be known as the Australia Pacific LNG STEM Hub will deliver an innovative STEM facility and equipment, and will also fund an academically rigorous education program aimed at upskilling teachers in STEM subjects.
Local students and the broader community will also benefit with the hub being publically accessible.
CQUniversity’s Vice-Chancellor, Professor Scott Bowman said the new facility would place the Gladstone region at the forefront of efforts to address the national (and international) STEM skills shortage.
“Through this facility, we have a goal to proactively address the growing need for STEM education and skills.
“It is fantastic to see a local operator with international reach investing in STEM education in regional Australia.”
Australia Pacific LNG CEO, Warwick King, said the hub would be an attractive, engaging physical space equipped with specialist STEM education resources that allow students and visitors to be hands-on with fundamental aspects of the STEM disciplines, saying up to 75 percent of jobs now require STEM skills.
“Australia Pacific LNG believes it is vitally important to improve STEM education and training in regional Australia and ensure the workforce of tomorrow is equipped with essential skills and knowledge.
“This project presents an education solution that addresses the causes of STEM knowledge gaps while creating interest and building capacity for teachers and students.”
CQUniversity Assistant Vice-Chancellor Owen Nevin agrees: “It’s a really big step for the region. It’s so important that our educators have the skills to be able to inspire students and the facilities to be able to inspire these students,” he said, adding that the STEM Hub would include electronics and a wet-lab, robotics, mechatronics and drones.