The problem of how to train the next generation of South Australian surveyors, after the existing university course in South Australia stopped taking new students in mid-2022, has been solved with the introduction of a new course at Flinders University.
Students will be able to apply to undertake study at Flinders via a new Bachelor of Surveying (B.Surv), which will be part of a four-year degree within the Bachelor of Geospatial Information Systems (B.GIS).
The B.GIS-B.Surv will be available from 2024, meaning first year B.GIS students in 2023 will be able transfer to the second year of the double degree next year. Applications are now open via SATAC.
The degree will result in students attaining the necessary skills to go on to become Licenced Surveyors. Importantly, it will also enable them to study in South Australia rather than being forced to go interstate.
“The establishment of this new degree by Flinders University is critical to the longevity of the surveying profession both locally and nationally,” said Surveyor-General of South Australia, Bradley Slape.
“The skills shortage we are facing will directly impact our capacity to service infrastructure projects and the property needs of South Australians. Flinders University will be delivering a degree that safeguards a pipeline of talent and built environment professionals.”
The new course is a result of the work of the South Australia Government’s Built Environment Education Liaison Group (BEELG), which brings together key stakeholders to build study pathways and support industry growth.
It follows strong advocacy from the Surveyor General, the Surveyor’s Board of South Australia and the wider industry to train local talent to address a skills shortage in ‘built environment’ roles.
“There is rising demand for built environment professions amid a nationwide skills shortage, and these courses will help address the long-term needs of one of our most important industries,” said the South Australia Planning Minister and Minister for Housing and Urban Development, Nick Champion.
“Graduates will play a vital role in addressing skills shortages in our state, helping to tackle the housing crisis. We want South Australians learning and developing their careers here rather than heading interstate for study.”
BEELG has also overseen the expansion of additional tertiary options with the establishment of a new planning diploma at TAFE SA, designed to bridge the skills gap and fill entry-level vacancies, particularly in regional councils.
Strong demand saw all available places in the new planning course’s first intake quickly filled, enabling students to become para-planners and find work within local government. Applications for next year’s semester one course opened on 14 August.
In addition, UniSA has worked with the state government to introduce a new grant program to support its existing Master of Urban and Regional Planning degree.
The grant, valued at $10,000, will be allocated to the tuition fees of five undergraduate students who intend to enrol in the master’s degree.
These initiatives coincide with fast-tracking the release of residential land across SA — which will require planners and surveyors — to deliver more than 25,000 homes.
“Flinders University recognises that addressing the workforce shortage in surveying — an area of critical need — is vital to our state’s ability to grow and prosper and find solutions to the issues around housing shortages,” said Flinders University Vice-Chancellor, Professor Colin Stirling.
“We’re committed to supporting the State Government’s vision for a locally developed highly skilled workforce to deliver complex outcomes in sustainable planning.
“By leveraging our strengths in engineering, environment, technology and business, our newly developed Bachelor of Surveying will deliver the highly skilled expertise required to meet current and emerging planning and infrastructure demands.”
GIS, hero, surveying, surveying education, university education
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