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Laura Hutton / Photocall Ireland

New Springboard courses to offer over 6,000 education places

The education initiative for unemployed people has 6,000 more places on offer.

EDUCATION AND SKILLS Minister Ruairí Quinn has announced 6,000 extra places on the second instalment of the Government’s training initiative for the unemployed.

The extra spots come as 36 institutes of technology, universities and privately-run higher education colleges across the country will offer new courses in the Springboard 2012 programme.

The 220 courses are in the areas of ICT, medical devices, the green economy, pharmaceuticals, food and beverages and international financial services. Programmes will also be made available in lean and quality systems, international selling, languages, business start-up and entrepreneurship skills.

Courses are all free, part-time and at certificate, degree and postgraduate level for all those who are unemployed and actively seeking work.

More than 3,500 people are due to graduate this month from the first round of Springboard programmes, which were put in place in 2011.

Minister Quinn said these people now have up-to-date qualifications, as well as a “wealth of experience and workforce skills” to bring to an employer.

However, a number of changes to Springboard 2012 are also being introduced in response to feedback on last year’s first phase.

The eligibility criteria has been expanded to include people who were previously self-employed and people in receipt of an extended number of social welfare payments such as the Disability Allowance and the Carers’ Allowance.

For more information, contact the freephone guidance line on 1800 303 523. View the full list of SpringBoard courses here.

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