Higher Apprenticeships Pilot Project


There is a recognised need to invest in driving quality skills and career pathways to Victoria’s largest and fastest growing industry, the social services sector.  As evidenced by a series of Royal Commissions – family violence, mental health, disability services and aged care – there is community consensus that we can do better to support vulnerable people. 

By developing innovative new qualifications in the social assistance sectors, new learning pathways and workforce opportunities are provided to a much-needed workforce, qualifications which will ensure that female-dominated industries are able to access the same kinds of skills opportunities as male-dominated industries, such as construction.   

Project Overview

FSSI is leading the development of a Higher Apprenticeships model for Victoria’s social service sector.  While apprenticeships are an established mode in trades, they are a relatively new pathway in social services.  FSSI is working closely with industry partners to ensure that the model that is developed supports industry needs and responds to industry challenges – specifically the need to grow the sectors’ leadership and management capacity and capability.

The Higher Apprenticeships will provide an on-job up-skilling and credentialing pathway for team leaders and supervisors to become managers.  Targeted at those currently working in the social service sector, the pilot will use the nationally accredited RMIT Advanced Diploma in Community Sector Management (ADCSM) as the base qualification to support this up-skilling pathway. 

The course is one of two pilot schemes that have together received $5.6 million in Victorian government funding. It is fully funded by the Victorian Government, meaning participants do not pay course fees.

Key Partners

Scope, Erhma, BaptCare, Villa Maria, St John of God Accord, Jewish Care

Project Team

Rick Ede

Shefton Parker