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Maharey commends Rongotai College on Gateway

30 October 2001 Media Statement

Maharey commends Rongotai College on Gateway partnerships with business


Associate Education (Tertiary Education) Minister Steve Maharey is congratulating Rongotai College for its partnership with a local business which has seen one of its students signing on to the Modern Apprenticeship programme.

Today Chris Van Dongen, a prefect from Rongotai College, signed up as the college’s first Modern Apprentice in carpentry with PJ & AJ Building Ltd. The signing was facilitated under the Government’s Gateway programme, established earlier this year to give schools the resources to build effective partnerships with business.

Steve Maharey said it is exciting to see the Gateway pilot initiative at Rongatai College giving this young man a headstart in his chosen career in building.

“Senior students on Gateway participate in structured workplace learning integrated with a general education programme. Their achievements are credited towards national qualifications. Through choosing to be involved in Gateway students gain a valuable insight into working life.

“Nationally over 1600 young people are now working as Modern Apprentices.”

Employers such as Adam Jupt of AJ & PJ Building have responded positively to both Gateway and Modern Apprenticeships initiatives.

Mr Jupt said Modern Apprenticeships is a really good programme. “It’s about time something like this happened to get young people out in the workplace getting hands on experience. I would recommend it to any employer – it certainly makes it easier to take on a good young apprentice. Chris Van Doogen, fitted right in from the first day, he has done really well,” he said.

Rongotai College has had 24 students involved in Gateway. Virginia Wilson, Head of Careers at the College says, “the programme has been extremely successful – developing a broad range of opportunities for our students. Chris Van Dongen is the first of our students to obtain a Modern Apprenticeship,” she said.

Successes of other students will be celebrated at a college graduation on 14 November.

ENDS

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