Tuesday, 14 February 2012
Department of Education and Skills
Question 217: To ask the Minister for Education and Skills the number of applications that have been received to date for the 17 new graduate skills conversion programmes across the country; if he is expecting over-subscription to the programme; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [7842/12]
The 17 programmes on offer in the new level 8 conversion programme will provide for 768 places countrywide. The courses will be delivered on average over two semesters of 12/13 weeks study and will include a period of about 12 weeks work experience. Applications for the programmes can be submitted online through the Bluebrick.ie website. To date 422 applications have been received. The closing dates for applications have not yet passed and participating colleges are still accepting applications. Given the very close involvement of industry in the design and development of these programmes, which are being fully funded by my Department, I would expect a high level of interest on the part of jobseekers.
The question of the provision of additional places will be considered in the light of the outcome of an interim evaluation of the initiative to be carried out by the HEA before the end of the year.