University of the Sunshine Coast’s Rural and Remote Education Program
The University of the Sunshine Coast (USC) provides many opportunities for its pre-service teachers to enrich their learning through undertaking regional, rural or remote teaching placements. Established in 2010, the Rural and Remote Education Program has enabled upwards of 300 pre-service teachers to experience such placements.
The program targets two key detractors for pre-service teachers taking up rural and remote education placements, ‘fear of the unknown’ and ‘lack of finances and other financial factors’. To address ‘fear of the unknown’, pre-service teachers are provided with a week-long orientation and immersion in rural communities through the Coast to Country experience. Pre-service teachers who are then interested in taking up placements in rural and remote areas can apply for bursaries that provide financial support, addressing ‘lack of finances and other financial factors’.
TFFF has supported the Program since its inception in 2010 and has approved an additional three years support for the provision of bursaries for pre-service teachers to undertake placement in rural and remote Queensland.