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Murraylands Skills Centre officially opens to entrepreneurs, students and job seekers
The business hub at 20 Bridge Street, Murray Bridge will serve as a co-working space and a place to make valuable connections.
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A new business hub and co-working space has been officially opened in Murray Bridge’s CBD.
A month after its doors were opened to the public, South Australian Skills Commissioner Cameron Baker came to cut a red ribbon at the Murraylands Skills Centre last Tuesday.
The expansive space at 20 Bridge Street – previously a Centrelink office – has been transformed into a flexible space to be used by entrepreneurs, remote workers and tertiary students.
It will also be a place where job seekers can get advice on the sorts of work and training opportunities available locally.
That was all part of the plan – specifically, the SA Skills Plan, which prompted $13.7 million worth of state government investment in similar facilities around the state.
“(The plan) highlighted the need for better connections between learners, providers and employers, particularly in regional areas,” Mr Baker told a crowd at the opening.
Bringing all parties together in one place would make it easier for job seekers to find out what skills local employers needed, he said.
Having a space available would make it easier to convince training providers to come and deliver workshops.
Giving students the flexibility to use the hub for study at any time between 6am and midnight would also make it easier for them to complete their courses.
A high drop-out rate in vocational education was another problem that had needed addressing, Mr Baker said.
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Murray Bridge Mayor Wayne Thorley said he was excited about the space opening up in Murray Bridge’s main street.
“I feel like we’re going in the direction we really want to go,” he said.
“Our community is in the midst of growth, our businesses are expanding, there’s investment in the pipeline.”
He hoped the centre would foster innovation and collaboration, helping more businesses thrive and binding disparate parts of the community more closely together.
As well as an open-plan co-working space where anyone is able to make bookings for as little as half a day or as long as 12 months at a time, the centre features:
Private office spaces
A fully equipped kitchen and lunch room
Wi-fi with desk hire, or free for students
The council’s economic development staff will work out of the centre, and other agencies will be invited to work there, too, in time.
Aside from the state government and council, partners in the project included Ngarrindjeri Ruwe Empowered Communities, MTE SA, TAFE SA, Business Murray Bridge, Murray Bridge High School and Regional Development Australia Murraylands and Riverland.
The centre will initially run as a 12-month pilot.
More information: www.murraybridge.sa.gov.au.