StudyAdelaide and Regional Development Australia Limestone Coast (RDALC) have partnered to introduce international students studying health and allied health to prospective employers in the Limestone Coast.
Around 50 international students and graduates will hit the road on September 7 as part of the Future Healthcare Workers Limestone Coast Tour, a three-day tour of Kingston, Millicent, Mount Gambier, Naracoorte and Keith, where they will meet representatives from local hospitals, nursing homes, regional health networks and local government to discuss employment opportunities.
South Australian regional health and care providers are facing significant skills shortages as highlighted in the recent Aged Care Royal Commission. Latest figures from StudyAdelaide indicate that approximately 54 per cent of international students intend to live and work in South Australia after completing their studies, with half of those willing to explore a move to regional SA.
StudyAdelaide Chief Executive Karyn Kent said StudyAdelaide and RDALC had received overwhelming interest in the tour from both students and employers.
“More than 830 students registered an interest in the Limestone Coast visit, and we have a wait list for future tours to the Limestone Coast and other regions,” Ms Kent said.
“Our research indicates that more than 50 per cent of international students would consider working in a regional area outside of Adelaide. Therefore, on the one hand we have thousands of students keen to find employment and willing to look outside of greater Adelaide. And on the other hand, we have major regional employers dealing with skills shortages and gaps in their workforce.”
RDALC CEO David Wheaton said he was excited to be working with StudyAdelaide to facilitate the connection between prospective newcomers to the region and local employers.
“The Limestone Coast is currently experiencing great demand for health care workers region wide,” said RDALC CEO, David Wheaton.
“We know that in the month of August alone, there was 107 health care and social assistance vacancies in our region, representing 17% of all jobs advertised in the Limestone Coast,” Mr Wheaton said.
“By partnering with StudyAdelaide and the local Councils, we are able to provide the students with information and opportunities that our region offers, which will hopefully lead them to consider working and living here permanently,” Mr Wheaton said.
“It’s a win-win all round. International students both gain employment – often in sectors that would otherwise have skills shortages – and create employment – with every three international students in South Australia creating one local job.” Said Ms Kent.
The students will travel by bus to the region where they will be welcomed by RDALC and briefed by community leaders on job opportunities and the benefits of living and working in each community.
Students will meet representatives from major regional hospitals including the Kingston, Naracoorte, and Millicent Hospitals, Limestone Coast Regional Health Network, allied health providers, and local aged care facilities.