Queensland Government
Take your future on

Free Apprenticeships Hotline
1800 210 210

Where are the jobs and industries of the future? You'll find them listed in the Free apprenticeships for under 21s program. They offer your child or any student the opportunity to take an apprenticeship or traineeship on, with the cost of training with a training provider covered by the Queensland Government, so they're qualified and employable in the future.

What does the program cover?

‘Free’ means the Queensland Government will cover the full cost of training undertaken by your child or any student with a training provider as part of an apprenticeship or traineeship. The employer will continue to pay wages. During their time as an apprentice or trainee, your child or any student may still incur uniform or resources costs required for training.

Two women and two children sitting at a table in a childcare centre.

Eligibility requirements.

  • Under 21
  • Employed in Queensland under a training contract in one of the 139 priority apprenticeship or traineeship qualifications
  • Employed on or after 1 July 2019
One male carpenter using a power tool.

More about apprentices and trainees.

Apprentices are trained in a skilled trade (e.g. electrical, plumbing, cabinet making and automotive) to become a qualified tradesperson. Most apprenticeships take up to four years.

Trainees are trained in vocational areas (e.g. business administration, information technology or tourism) over a 12 month to 3-year period, and receive a qualification upon completion.

Some fast facts.
  • Hours can be full-time (38 hours per week) or part-time (no less than 15 hours per week).
  • A training contract is a legally binding agreement to work and train for a specified length of time.
  • Employers work with a training provider and the apprentice or trainee to develop and deliver a training plan.

Choose your industry.

There are 139 priority apprenticeship or traineeship qualifications offered under the program. Just choose one, then take the next steps for your future.

Agriculture and horticulture
Automotive
Aviation
Beauty and hairdressing
Building and construction
Child care
Community services
Creative
Electrotechnology and utilities
Engineering
Hospitality and cookery
Laboratory science
Manufacturing and design
Meat processing
Racing
Resources and mining
Water industry

Follow these steps:

1.

Have a look at the options. Look through the 139 apprenticeships and traineeships on offer.

2.

Have a chat. As a parent and advisor, you play an important role in guiding your child or student in the choices they make.

Take action now.

Complete the enquiry form to receive all the information you need to get started.

Frequently asked questions.

What is the Free apprenticeships for under 21s program?

From 1 July 2019, young people up to 21 years will be able to undertake one of 139 apprenticeships and traineeships and have their training paid for by the Queensland Government.

The program is also open to young people who commenced in one of the 139 priority apprenticeships or traineeships in previous years, if they were under 21 years of age on 1 July 2019 and are still in training.

Who will the program assist?

Fee-free apprenticeships will be available to all young people under 21 years that commence in a priority apprenticeship or traineeship from 1 July 2019.

Fee-free apprenticeships will also be available to all apprentices and trainees under 21 years that are still in training in these priority qualifications, with fee-free training available for all units or modules commenced on or after 1 July 2019.

Apprentices and trainees already eligible for fee-free training under the Free tafe for Year 12 graduates initiative will continue to be eligible.

The Queensland Government will contribute the training fees for all eligible young people until they complete their apprenticeship or traineeship, including those that complete after the age of 21 years.

What apprenticeships and traineeships will be free?

Fee-free training will be available to those young people under 21 years who commence in a high priority apprenticeship or traineeship during the 4 year period of 1 July 2019 to 30 June 2023.

There are 139 apprenticeships and traineeships on offer from our high priority skills list including:

  • electrical
  • plumbing
  • construction
  • engineering
  • early childhood education
  • hospitality

View the full list of priority qualifications.

How will the program work?

Under current employment award provisions, employers are generally required to fund the training costs of their apprentices.

From 1 July 2019, any business taking on an apprentice or trainee under 21 in any of the 139 qualifications will not have to pay any training fees.

The Queensland Government will pay these fees to the apprentice or trainee's training provider (they must be a Pre-qualified supplier) on their behalf.

What are the anticipated benefits?

The free apprenticeships program will:

  • create more employment pathways for young people
  • remove financial barriers to participation in high priority vocations
  • encourage more employers to take on young apprentices and trainees
  • expand access to fee-free pathways for young people up to 21 years old
  • provide additional support for young people and their employer.

If someone has already commenced an apprenticeship or traineeship, are they still eligible for the Free apprenticeships for under 21s program?

Free apprenticeships for under 21s will cover the cost of training for apprentices and trainees who are undertaking a priority apprenticeship or traineeship qualification from 1 July 2019 to 30 June 2023.

Free apprenticeships will be available to all apprentices and trainees under 21 years that are still in training in the 139 high priority qualifications, with fee-free training available for all units or modules commenced on or after 1 July 2019.

Will this funding be available to all apprentices under the age of 21 or is it limited to certain trades?

The Free apprenticeships for under 21s initiative will be available to all apprentices and trainees under the age of 21 years in the 139 high priority apprenticeships and traineeships.

Can apprentices who did not complete Year 12 access this funding?

Yes, the Free apprenticeships for under 21s program will expand upon the current Free tafe for year 12 graduates initiative to provide access to fee-free training for all young people under 21 years.

Are there any other specific eligibility requirements?

If a young person under 21 years is eligible to be employed as an apprentice or trainee in a high priority qualification, they will automatically be eligible to receive their training fee-free.

For apprentices and trainees under 21 years that are still in training in the high priority qualifications, fee-free training will only be available for all units or modules commenced on or after 1 July 2019.

How will the student and/or employer access the funding?

For eligible apprentices and trainees, the Queensland Government will pay the training fees direct to the training provider (they must be a Pre-qualified supplier) on their behalf, so students and employers should not be required to do anything to access fee-free training.

If fees have already been paid for an eligible apprentice of trainee, will there be a refund?

For eligible apprentices and trainees that commenced prior to 1 July 2019 and were still under 21 years at this date, the Queensland Government will pay the training fees for any units or modules started after 1 July 2019. The training provider (must be a Pre-qualified supplier) will reimburse them for any fees paid for this training since 1 July 2019.

Is an apprentice or trainee eligible if their training contract was cancelled and they recommence when they are over 21 years of age?

No, a young person will only be eligible to access fee-free training under the Free apprentices for under 21s program if they recommence when they are still under 21 years, and if it is before 30 June 2023.

Take action now

Complete the enquiry form to receive all the information you need to get started.

Take your future on