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Women and students receiving free training and pathway into startup sector

Victorians who lost their job during the pandemic will have the chance to take a free skills bootcamp to help them land a role with one of the state’s burgeoning startups.

“We’re backing Victorians who want to transition into a different career with the skills and knowledge to work in a startup or scaleup company,” said Minister for Innovation, Medical Research and the Digital Economy Jaala Pulford.

“We know that startups create jobs and are playing an increasingly important role in Victoria’s economy. Programs such as these will help Victorians navigate a career change to a high-growth, future-focused sector.”

A new $2 million LaunchVic initiative will provide training to 900 people in total, including 120 fellowships set aside for women and 300 fellowships for students.

The first 40 trainees began a five-week course last week, with almost three-quarters of participants in the INCO Australia Get Into Tech program born overseas.


Farzana Mirdadi, who was born in Afghanistan, is among the intake learning about in-demand roles including digital marketing and web design. Students will build their skills before working with a job placement specialist.

Minister for Innovation, Medical Research and the Digital Economy Jaala Pulford said the funding would provide new career pathways for Victorians and ensure a pipeline of suitable candidates for Victoria’s rapidly growing startup ecosystem.

Deloitte Access Economics has found the Victorian startup ecosystem, with the right support, has the potential to add on average an additional 15,700 jobs each year over the next 20 years.

Getting the right talent remains one of the main impediments to startup growth in Victoria. Research undertaken by LaunchVic found many job applicants either didn’t have startup experience or capability, didn’t know where to find a startup job, or were simply unaware of the potential opportunities.

LaunchVic ran a funding process seeking high-quality proposals from experienced providers to build capability and provide hands-on experience and connections needed to secure a job at a startup or scaleup. The successful grant recipients were:

  • INCO Australia, to run bootcamps and a placement service to help Victorians stood down during COVID-19 to land their first junior role in a startup. The program will create 480 industry-ready startup workers.
  • Stone & Chalk, to run eventsand develop online learning and skills and experience assessments open to all Victorians, and a mentor matching program to equip jobseekers with the know-how to succeed in a startup.
  • Startmate, to run a Women-Only Fellowship for 120 Victorian women to help them land their dream startup job and a Student Fellowship that will creating pathways for 300 exceptional Victorian university students.

“Victoria’s startup ecosystem has tripled in size in just three years now worth $7 billion, and we anticipate this growth will continue,” said LaunchVic CEO Dr Kate Cornick.

“Getting the right talent remains one of the main impediments to startup growth. Upskilling through these free programs demonstrates a growth mindset and is an efficient way to build the skills startups are looking for.”


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