Record number of schools encouraging tomorrow’s agricultural workforce

Published Thursday, 16 June, 2022 at 05:07 PM


Minister for Agricultural Industry Development and Fisheries and Minister for Rural Communities
The Honourable Mark Furner

Minister for Employment and Small Business and Minister for Training and Skills Development
The Honourable Di Farmer

A record 74 schools have applied to take part in the 2022 Agribusiness Gateway to Industry Schools Project (AGISP).

AGISP is a partnership between schools, training providers, universities and industry, and helps young people move from school into further education or employment in agriculture-related industries.

Minister for Agricultural Industry Development and Fisheries and Minister for Rural Communities Mark Furner said through AGISP students gained an understanding of exciting technological innovation across the agribusiness supply chain.

“The Department of Agriculture and Fisheries (DAF) is committed to helping nurture the next generation of agricultural workers, and AGISP aligns to the Queensland Government’s vision for all Queenslanders to have the skills and opportunities to participate and prosper in the economy,” Mr Furner said.

“The program has more than 30 mentors available to schools to aid in agriculture education, scientific trials, infrastructure planning and professional development, as well as over 200 industry partners.

“Small Grants of up to $10,000 are available to implement AgTech in agriculture studies or, alternatively, to expand current studies or undertake field experiences. Teachers can also apply for professional development funding.”  

 Mr Furner said past participants in the AGISP had often gone on to further study or work in agriculture-related industries.

“This year, senior students and school leavers will be encouraged to consider participating in a seasonal harvest work school holiday program,” he said.

“This is an opportunity to earn money and gain experience, not only with on-farm work, but also skills and experience in applying for jobs and participating in interviews.”

Minister for Training and Skills Development Di Farmer said Agribusiness was one of 10 Gateway to Industry Schools Projects that helped Queensland school students explore their career choices and learn from innovators and leaders in their chosen field.

“The Workforce Summit the Palaszczuk Government convened in March highlighted a need to boost workers across a range of industries, including in the agricultural sector,” she said.

“Programs such as GISP are increasingly important in terms of ensuring we are building a homegrown workforce who are inspired to build a career in their chosen industry while they are still in school.

“GISP is a unique collaboration between industry and schools that allows students to experience real world work environments also benefits industry sectors and the community by having skilled local workers.

“When this program started 15 years ago, we had 42 schools involved – we now have more than 270 Queensland schools participating across the ten priority industries, advancing the opportunities for Queensland students and keeping more jobs local.

“I thank all the industry partners and schools for working together to deliver creative projects that enrich the education and career prospects for Queensland students.”

Cotton Australia Education Manager Jenny Hughes said AGISP played a key role in connecting schools from urban and regional areas to agriculture, enabling teachers to facilitate pathways for students to learn about the Australian cotton industry’s world leading sustainable production practices.

“This early exposure of students to the innovation and development of the cotton industry better equips them to be informed consumers and can motivate them to consider agriculture as a meaningful and worthwhile career option,” Ms Hughes said.

AGISP is funded by the Department of Employment, Small Business and Training and administered by DAF. 


Minister Furner contact – Ron Goodman – 0427 781 920

Minister Farmer contact – Emma Renwick – 0456 604 189


AGISPs and industry partners:

  • Advanced Manufacturing – Queensland Manufacturing Institute 
  • Aerospace – Aviation Australia
  • Agribusiness – Department of Agriculture and Fisheries
  • Building and Construction – Construction Skills Queensland
  • Community Services – National Disability Services
  • Health – CheckUP Australia
  • Information and Communication Technology – Australian Computer Society
  • Minerals and Energy – Queensland Resources Council
  • Screen and Media – Essential Crew
  • Tourism and Hospitality – Queensland College of Wine Tourism