The Springboard+ Initiative, managed by the Higher Education Authority on behalf of the Department of Education and Skills, has announced thousands of places on free or low cost upskilling courses for both jobseekers and jobholders. There are over 9000 places on 282 courses, many of which are designed to "future-proof" workers against the rapid technological change evident across a number of industries. Some of the courses will focus on areas like Artificial Intelligence, Data Analytics, Software Development, Interaction Design, and Cloud Computing. In addition to these ICT course, there are also a number of courses available in other growing sectors, which will see a rise in demand for skilled workers, such as the Manufacturing and Financial Services sectors.
The following are eligible to apply for courses in 2019/20 academic year (subject to the applicant meeting all requirements, including academic requirements):
- Returners (Formerly referred to as Homemakers)
- May apply to all courses if they meet the nationality/visa requirement and residency criteria. Course specific criteria may also apply.
- People in employment
- May apply to all courses if they meet the nationality/visa requirement and residency criteria.
- Please note that a 10% course fee contribution for Level 7, 8, and 9 courses is applicable for employed participants. This is payable directly to the provider.
- The unemployed or formerly self-employed
- May apply to all courses with the exception of the two year part-time ICT conversion courses. Unemployed applicants will also be required to meet additional DEASP related criteria. They must have been in receipt of a recognised DEASP payment for 9 of the previous 12 months if they wish to participate on one-year full-time ICT Skills Conversion courses.
To find out more about Upskilling Courses, click here.
To find out more about the ICT sector, click here.
To find out more about the Manufacturing sector, click here.
To find out more about the Financial Services sector, click here.