Govt to fund ICT schools

Steven Joyce (Simon Wong / 3 News)
Steven Joyce (Simon Wong / 3 News)

The Government will spend $28.6 million on three technology-focused graduate schools in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch over the next four years, Tertiary Education, Skills and Employment Minister Steven Joyce says.

The Information and Communications Technology (ICT) schools will be hosted by local tertiary institutions in each city, and form a key part of the Government's attempts to make New Zealand a hub for technology businesses.

Mr Joyce revealed the Auckland school will be hosted by the University of Auckland and the University of Waikato in a media conference at Christchurch today, saying 'satellite' locations will be available in Hamilton and Tauranga.

The southern school will be hosted by an alliance of local tertiary institutes including the University of Canterbury, Christchurch Polytechnic and Institute of Technology (CPIT), Lincoln University, Otago Polytechnic and the University of Otago.

It will have a campus in Christchurch's Innovation Precinct, along with a 'satellite' in Dunedin, and will focus on regional economies including agri-tech and health technology. 

Mr Joyce says an announcement will be made about the Wellington school later this year.

"Through this collaborative approach we will see ICT graduates with work-relevant, business-focused skills as well as more direct pathways from education into employment," he said in a statement.

"The global ICT industry is expected to grow by US$1.3 trillion between 2013 and 2020. For New Zealand businesses to make the most of this opportunity, they need hi-tech professionals working in their businesses."

The three schools are expected to train around 350 students every year once established.

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