Round 2

Applications for round 2 of the Partnership Grants generated a significant amount of interest from the careers and education sector, with more than 200 applications received.

Successful grant recipients

Round 2 of the National Careers Institute Partnership Grants provided 16 organisations with funding to deliver innovative career advisory products and services for people at all stages of their careers.

Applicant Project title Project description Grant amount

Central Queensland University

Excited 4 Careers in Agriculture

The Exited 4 Careers in Agriculture program will improve the quality of, and access to, locally based, personalised career guidance for K-10 students in regional and rural communities. The agricultural industry offers many career pathways, however young people often do not know about the opportunities available to them in their local region. Partners in this project will collaborate to develop and deliver innovative activities which provide quality career guidance about the range of skills needed for agricultural jobs in a local context to primary and secondary students. As a result, young people in regional and rural areas will know how to develop the skills required by local employers, enabling them to reach their career potential.


University of South Australia

University of South Australia Careers Compass

This project will design and deliver a scalable and sustainable program that assists young people in Years 6 to 9 to develop the competencies of the Australian Blueprint for Career Development. The project will co-design, develop and roll out facilitated workshops for Years 6 and 8, and ‘units of work’ embedded in the Australian Curriculum for Years 7 and 9, with associated teacher professional development. All educational resources needed to deliver the project will be created including a set of ‘personas’ highlighting the diversity of career paths and structures available. The project is locally focused, face-to-face and supports young people in South Australia in their career development through the critical middle years of school.


Eurobodalla Shire Council

Creating Career Pathways

Councils’ commitment to the long-term future of Eurobodalla is reflected in the aims of the Creating Career Pathways project plan, through our partners and the broader community we will deliver on our shared vision to strengthen community and individuals through the delivery of co-designed progressive career guidance activities that support a vibrant and diverse economy. Leveraging our collective skills, knowledge and resources the project aims to improve access to higher education, lifelong learning and career development opportunities through programs that respond to our changing environment, building community resilience by focusing on continuous improvement and innovation to prepare for future challenges and growth.


Glenelg & Southern Grampians Local Learning & Employment Network

Enhance work placement experience for everyone.

The project enhances career education & work experience opportunities by increasing access of rural students to ‘industries of choice’ in larger communities. A project coordinator brings together a collaborative partnership between schools, Rotary, SWTAFE and the LLEN to identify, and recruit Rotary host families to billet rural students in safe accommodation so they can have access to broader industry placements. The program provides specialist PPE & travel for work experience related requirements for students & a series of workshops for students, parents and employers to build greater understanding of the importance of work experience, employer expectations and VET pathways. Practical tools for host employers to will be developed.


AgCommunicators Pty Ltd

The SA Ag Careers Hub: Promoting Future Ag Opportunities

The SA AgCareers Hub will deliver career guidance initiatives to support South Australian agriculture. The hub, to be located at Urrbrae Agricultural High School, will deliver face-to-face career guidance programs throughout SA which link industry, schools and education providers. The hub will survey industry and teachers upfront to identify future ag industry careers and the skills required to fill them. Knowledge will inform teachers/advisers and student (yr 7-10) guidance programs such as 1) Weekly career workshops which link students to industry 2) Student/parent careers sessions each term. 3) Regional ag careers roadshow 4) An annual ag careers camp profiling over 40 careers and 5) ongoing teacher support.


Ames Australia

Opening Minds, Building Futures - a career development project

This project will engage, inform and empower young people to identify career goals and pathways; and to build confidence in parents and school influencers advising them. AMES Australia and CMY will provide information sessions, workshops and one-on-one career counselling to years 7-10 students from Pasifika and South Sudanese communities in metropolitan Melbourne. The project will support 240 young people over 18 months through a strength-based, co-designed and culturally sensitive approach - delivered by multicultural youth workers and career counsellors. It is anticipated that young people will have increased confidence and knowledge of their opportunities, leading to structural change in highly socio-economic disadvantaged areas.


University of The Sunshine Coast

Crystallising STEM Careers

The Crystallising STEM Careers project aims to bring about systemic change in STEM career uptake by preparing Year 4 – 10 students to make informed decisions about engaging in STEM subjects at school, future transition into tertiary studies and STEM careers. The project will achieve this via innovative STEM-focused career and technical education (CTE) delivered face-to-face in a series of lessons with students in schools and via interactive workshops for parents/carers. This project will provide a unique and valuable opportunity for students and parents/carers in the South East QLD North, Wide Bay Burnett and Central QLD regions, where previously these programs have only been available to students in low socio-economic government schools.


Wodonga Institute of Tafe

ABC - A Boost to Careers program

The project will resource and deliver an engaging careers program for junior students in isolated rural secondary schools within the Albury Wodonga Career Advisors Association (AWCAA) footprint of North East Victoria and NSW Southern Riverina. The program will provide an immersive learning format; understanding of jobs, local industry, apprenticeships/ traineeships, the VET sector, educational pathways and increase awareness of a range of occupations. Students will identify their own strengths, find assistance in future selection of subjects, be linked to state career projects and gain guidance towards relevant career choices. It will form a part of a suite of career guidance initiatives offered by Wodonga TAFE.


Hume Employment Service Limited

SPI a Career - Students, Parents & Industry promoting careers to years 7-10

Kestrel, Wodonga Senior Secondary, Wodonga Middle Years, Mt Beauty and Beechworth Colleges will partner to deliver SPI A Career – a program that builds career advice capability of parents through the Engaging Parents in Career Conversations (EPiCC) Model. It will support students to develop career portfolios using the Career Tools digital platform and will encourage careers in local skill shortage areas or roles that are less widely publicised through traditional careers channels. SPI will introduce year 7-10 students from low socio-economic areas to new industries at a point in their lives where they start making decisions that impact career options and will integrate into existing careers programs ensuring long term sustainability.


Moonee Valley City Council

Mamma’s Kitchen Co-designed Career Guidance for Migrant & Refugee Women

Effective career guidance for women from migrant and refugee backgrounds must be culturally relevant and tailored to address the intersecting barriers to employment and job-seeking that this cohort face. Building on the success of Moonee Valley City Council’s hospitality-focused work experience program, Mamma’s Kitchen Pilot Program (Mamma’s Kitchen 2020), this project seeks funding to create a co-designed career guidance program for migrant and refugee women. Combining interactive workshops with peer-mentoring and tailored support, the program will empower local women to improve their industry knowledge and networks and achieve their career goals in sectors of their choice.


Jobs South West Inc

Job South West Careers of the Future Program

The Jobs South West (JSW) Careers of the Future Program (COFP) will develop and deliver a Career Related Learning (CRL) aspirational curriculum based on international best practice and research for primary school aged children and young adults. This project will work with schools across the Bunbury region, a regional city, which has long been home to a large lower socio-economic community with an unemployment rate of 3.6% and a youth unemployment rate of 13.6%. The program will innovatively build on extensive career services being delivered by JSW, reaching an even wider cross section of the community and equalising opportunity for learners, their peers and families to understand the Careers of the Future in a very local context.


Community Migrant Resource Centre Incorporated

Career Pathways to Future Success

The proposed project is a joint initiative of Community Migrant Resource Centre, HOST International and Glow Up Careers and has five key areas of focus: 1. To support parents from diverse backgrounds to access career information, 2. To support their children with pathway planning and access to information on future careers and education opportunities, 3. To build capacity of young people as peer leaders in the areas of career coaching and mentoring. 4.To bring interactive digital education and connection to both parents and their children to ensure they are future jobs ready. 5. Connect parents and children from diverse backgrounds to industries in demand including STEM and VET pathways.


Holmesglen Institute

Uncovering Careers in tunnelling and underground operations

The aim of this project is to raise the awareness of careers and career pathways in the tunnel construction and tunnel operation industries (the sector). To achieve this the project will develop interactive career tours, career pathway documentation and a mentoring platform to assist people preparing to enter the sector or those who have just commenced their career. There is an identified shortage of skilled workers in the sector and very little information available on careers and career pathways in the sector.
The successful deployment of this project will assist in meeting the employment demands of major tunnel construction projects planned for Victoria over the next 10 years.


Workrestart Social Enterprises Ltd

Project reStart

Project reStart will develop and implement a suite of innovative career development interventions for offenders and their employers that lead to a higher proportion of ex-offenders successfully building careers and making a positive contribution to the communities in which they live and work.
This project will bring together people with an experience of incarceration, career development practitioners and employers to design and deliver career advice and educational activities that build competence, and enable self-determination needed for successful reintegration into meaningful employment.


Australian Capital Territory Council of Social Service Inc

ACT Health and Community Services Careers Hub: Know you made a difference

The ACT Health and Community Services Careers Hub will:
1. Increase knowledge and create greater awareness of career paths in the sector
2. Promote a rewarding career change to mid-career professionals or people re-entering the workforce
3. Change perceptions in the broader community (parents, career advisers, educators) about careers in our sector
4. Support sector workforce to develop and reach their full career potential
5. Highlight the sector as a career aspiration to younger school children.
Impacts include:
- Increased understanding of skills sought the sector
- More people choosing to stay in or join the sector
- Improved local collaboration between employers, education and training providers and government.


Community Disability Alliance Hunter Incorporated


Peer2Peer will provide innovative, locally based career guidance for people with disability, by people with disability. University of Newcastle will adapt existing best practice in career guidance and peer mentoring to develop the Peer2Peer Model. Peer Mentors will deliver the model with Peer Mentees who are seeking employment, career change or development. The key activities include: model design and delivery; engagement with industry and business. The key outcomes will be: enhanced career pathways for people with disability; increased employer understanding of the benefits of employing people with disability; improved quality of career guidance. CDAH will benefit by offering an improved service to people with disability.


We received over 200 applications requesting more than $62.9 million funding for the proposed projects. The available funding is $6.1 million.

Eligible applications progressed to merit assessment where claims and evidence were considered against the 3 merit criteria, as per the Grant Opportunity Guidelines. To be considered for funding, applications had to meet a benchmark rating against all merit criteria and against other applications in this round, taking into consideration:

  • the project size
  • complexity
  • grant amount requested
  • the risks associated with the project.

Only applications that rated very highly were offered funding.

Assessment Criterion 1 – The extent that your partnership project will deliver an innovative locally based approach to help people develop careers that can adapt to the workforce of today and the future (45 points)

Applications that rated very highly:

  • clearly outlined how the project will improve the quality of, and/or access to career information and advice, for example, through a strong link between project outcomes and proposed improvements, and were supported by a strong rationale, evidence or convincing examples
  • showed how productive partnerships and linkages with stakeholders will be made to achieve project outcomes, with details and evidence of existing and anticipated collaborations
  • explained how the project will take a novel, locally based approach to career guidance programs, activities and services, by an evidence-based discussion of the innovative and local aspects of the proposal in consideration of existing practice(s)
  • proved how the project will build on existing evidence, information and products to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of career guidance programs, activities and services; and
  • described the communications strategy and media channels to be employed when showcasing the project to the broader community and reaching the target audience.

Assessment Criterion 2 – Capacity, capability and resources to deliver the project (35 points)

Applications that rated very highly:

  • proved their history with similar projects and their access to people with the right skills and experience
  • gave a clear project plan that aligned to the project in the application form, and set the timeframes, budget, risks, contingencies and consideration of project dependencies
  • outlined a strategy to maintain the project outcomes beyond the term of the grant funding, with examples and/or evidence; and
  • described how the success of the project will be measured, and gave quantitative and qualitative metrics and targets.

Assessment Criterion 3 – Impact of grant funding on your project (20 points)

Applications that rated very highly:

  • gave a strong rationale with specific examples or evidence of the benefits of grant funding to the targeted cohorts, their locality, the broader community and the careers sector
  • gave a detailed explanation of how their project complements the work of the National Careers Institute
  • showed good reason for the proposed value of the project by discussing the intended outcomes for the funding amount and scale of the project; and
  • proved additional investment such as cash or in-kind support.
Decisions are final and will not be reviewed.

Round 1 – 2020

Applications for round one of the Partnership Grants generated an incredible amount of interest from the careers and education sector, with more than 600 applications received. This interest was significantly higher than anticipated.

Successful grant recipients

Round 1 of the National Careers Institute Partnership Grants provided 13 organisations with funding to deliver innovative career advisory products and services for people at all stages of their careers.

Applicant Project title Project description Grant amount
Co-operative For Aborigines Limited Burawa - The National Indigenous Careers Centre based at Tranby The project will fill the nationwide gap in culturally appropriate career support for Indigenous Australians, including in under-serviced regional and remote areas. $700,000
Work Window Australia Pty Ltd Work Window Virtual Reality Scaleup This project will establish innovative virtual reality career experiences to help students understand and succeed at work. The project will partner with industry-leading employers to create virtual job shadowing using VR. This project will aim to work with schools and universities to help them access better careers information that gives students real insight into different jobs so that they can make the right choices for their future. $533,363
Graduate Careers Australia Limited CAREERS REGISTRATION - Supporting Tertiary Education Career Development This project seeks to strengthen career development in Australian tertiary institutions by promoting, supporting, and evaluating the sector-wide uptake of Careers Registration. $135,710
Institute of Public Works Engineering Australasia Queensland Adventures in engineering take science innovation stories into schools This project seeks to increase student interest in science with an innovative proposal to develop real world stories of problems solved by engineers as engaging narratives for primary school aged children (yrs 4 to 6). Based on solutions for real problems (‘What to do when the dam runs dry’), the books propose accessibly written narratives that engage young people with examples of science in action, allow for an understanding of science in the context of potential adult futures, elevate engineering’s public profile and note the way it contributes to society and human well-being -- to attract young people to engineering futures. $54,325
Skillset Limited Skillset CareerLink Central West This project aims to deliver a community based, regional career development service, partnering with RDA Central West that will provide face-to-face guidance, information and support to working age people across the Local Government Authorise of Central West NSW. The service features 3 delivery streams; CareerLink Hub, CareerLink Mobile and CareerLink Community. $599,050
TAFE Queensland Defence to Civilian Transition Training (DCTT) Project This project offers a new way to provide training and career solutions for Australian Defence Force members transitioning to civilian life across Australia. $700,000
National Association of Australian Apprenticeships Centres Inc. PRIME – A linked ecosystem of support for vocational pathways The project will establish an ecosystem of iterative ethical signposting that can begin several years before you leave school, helps guide your career choice thinking and extends beyond school to the Gateway placement service that will get your vocational career started. $328,400
Federation University Australia Careers in everyday industries: Potential benefits of increased visibility This research project will examine career paths in retail, hospitality, and allied industries, and attitudes towards them. The project will examine and make visible the careers that are available, the reasons for the low image of these industries, and will research awareness about careers in the industries among young people, adults, and those who advise them. $151,679
University of Melbourne Developing students’ life and career skills for successful workplace entry This project will develop a portfolio assessment tool for school and VET educators to help them assess young people’s employability skills and develop support materials for teachers to use to build these skills in school and VET classes. It will also work with employers to identify the employability skill requirements for entry-level positions in four industries and map these against the tool. The products from the project will help educators enable young people to build the essential employability capabilities required for successful transition to employment in major industries. $148,290
Community Services Directorate Understanding the Australian Building and Construction Industry This project will pilot a learning program that aligns with the Australian Curriculum and integrates industry perspectives to improve understanding of the building and construction industry for Years 7-8 (Humanities and Social Sciences) and Years 9-10 (Work Studies). Resources will be made available to Australian schools as a product to adapt into existing and future subject delivery.
Increased knowledge and understanding of the role of this industry in Australia’s economy, and the opportunities available, will support more students to consider a career in this industry, in particular young women.
The University of Adelaide CareerSpark The project aims to create a web-based, interactive virtual experience, enabling users to interact with the simulated work environments and workers and get careers advice and information on education pathways into key industry sectors. These include; Aerospace & Space, Shipbuilding & Defence Industries, Cyber & Big Data, and Allied Industries.
The project aims to target year 10 through to 2nd year undergraduate students at University and VET students, users will engage in immersive virtual experiences and kick-start their career journey.
Curtin University National Career Development Learning Hub for students with disability This project proposes to establish the first dedicated national Career Development Learning (CDL) Hub for students with disability. The CDL Hub will create an accessible range of freely available resources and practical examples of programs that address CDL for students with disability across the student lifecycle. The project team will conduct a national audit of existing CDL programs across the educational life cycle; leverage the results of this audit, and outreach evaluation expertise, to identify best practice; and trial a series of pilot studies that build upon this empirical evidence to create case studies foregrounding best practice in the field. $411,656
The Smith Family Inter-Gen Careers Initiative This project will engage secondary students and their parents or carers in a series of tailored activities which incrementally develop career knowledge and skills. The project will draw on The Smith Family’s established family, education, industry and community partnerships to further develop and collaboratively deliver career learning and workplace experience opportunities in 3 geographic regions experiencing socioeconomic disadvantage. Adopting a capacity building approach, the project will also enhance the capabilities of communities, through the development of sustainable networks which include local parents as Career Champions. $694,509

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