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COMMENT: Enrolment growth in key industries

As we fast approach the end of the year, many are looking ahead to winding down and taking a break.

But at Federation TAFE we are gearing up for what is our busiest period, with enrolments for 2024 having recently opened.

Our application figures are looking strong and show growth in courses which address key skills shortage areas within our region, as identified in the Victorian Skills Plan for 2023 into 2024 and the Wimmera Southern Mallee Skills Profile, which looks specifically at the current and emerging skills and industry demands of the Wimmera.

Data shows there is significant demand for new workers in key industries including construction, with the most in-demand occupation within the sector being electricians.

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A vital part of meeting the workforce needs of our community is the provision of quality education and training. 

Federation TAFE offers two courses in electrotechnology at our Wimmera Campus – Certificate II in Electrotechnology and Certificate III in Electrotechnology Electrician, the most popular course at our campus this year with more than 50 students enrolled.

Strong and beneficial partnerships with local employers are also important to engage and grow our future workforce. 

Since starting delivery of the electrotechnology courses at our Wimmera campus in 2011, teacher Iaian Fricker has been working closely with Horsham business Laser Electrical, among others, to recommend apprentices. 

Laser Electrical has taken on upwards of 40 Federation apprentices throughout the years, with three school-based apprentices signed on to start in 2024.

Like the vocational education and training delivered to secondary schools, VETDSS, program I mentioned in my last column, a school-based apprenticeship or traineeship, SBAT, allows young people to make a start on a career before they finish school and get hands-on training that leads to a nationally recognised qualification and credit towards their VCE, or similar. 

The difference is the student gets part-time employment and paid for time spent working and learning.

Through VETDSS, structured workplace learning and SBATs, Laser is finding potential staff early and creating a sustainable workforce by embracing the Wimmera’s young people and showing them that they do not have to pack their bags and go elsewhere for an exciting career, but can stay studying, living, working in and contributing to, the success of the Wimmera region.

For young people currently transitioning from school and considering their futures, you might not know the electrotechnology skillset qualifies you for numerous industries and opens many doors. You can work as a domestic or industrial electrician, be a high voltage tradesperson, work on wind towers and solar farms, or do large-scale commercial grade work. There are many different types of jobs and facets of the trade.

Electricians are paid well and continue to be sought after, so now is a good time to consider enrolling and taking up the trade. 

The Certificate II Electrotechnology, Career Start, is also a free TAFE course so there’s never been a better time to sign up.

The entire November 29, 2023 edition of The Weekly Advertiser is available online. READ IT HERE!

The entire November 29, 2023 edition of AgLife is available online. READ IT HERE!