Welding and metal fabrication students at TAFE NSW Griffith are set to reap the benefits of a $500,000 investment from the State Government to upgrade the campus’s metalwork facilities.
Minister for Skills, TAFE and Tertiary Education Steve Whan said the investment came amid strong demand for qualified metal fabricators and welders in the region from several major infrastructure projects – including the $250 million Griffith Base Hospital redevelopment.
“Skilled engineers play a critical role in building the future of communities like Griffith, and it’s great to see TAFE NSW creating a pipeline of homegrown welders and metal fabricators,” Mr Whan said.
“The investment in these engineering facilities, which includes new welders and a hydraulic press, will ensure graduates continue to have the job-ready skills and experience to support local industry, the economy, and the community.
Mr Whan said in addition to the campus upgrades, Griffith and surrounding communities would be the beneficiaries of a landmark National Skills Agreement between the Commonwealth and the NSW Government.
“The five-year agreement places TAFE NSW at the heart of the vocational education and training sector, providing up to $3.81 billion in funding for NSW to help expand access to skills training in communities across New South Wales, including the Riverina,” Mr Whan said.
TAFE NSW Griffith Head Teacher of Metal Fabrication and Welding Franc Prestia said Griffith’s manufacturing sector supported around 3000 jobs. He said TAFE NSW engineering graduates were also highly sought-after in the local agriculture and food processing industries.
“We are in constant contact with local industry to ensure we meet their training needs,” Mr Prestia said.
“TAFE NSW Griffith has seen solid growth in engineering apprentice numbers in recent years, and the upgrade to our workshop will ensure we continue delivering the job-ready skills employers expect and deserve.”