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35% Increase In Modern Apprenticeships Numbers

27 November 2001

The number of Modern Apprentices signed up under the Government’s flagship programme has risen 35% since June to 1,640, Associate Education (Tertiary Education) Minister Steve Maharey said today.

Modern Apprenticeships is a key part of the Industry Training Strategy and was introduced to improve access to structured industry training for young people aged 16-21. It was piloted in selected industries and regions during 2000 and then rolled out nationwide at the beginning of the year. Numbers in training have grown steadily ever since.

Steve Maharey said there are now 1,640 Modern Apprentices in training, up from 1,212 at 30 June to 1,640 at 30 September 2001. The Government wants to have 3,000 Modern Apprentices on the job by the end of 2002.

“The strength of Modern Apprenticeships is that it proactively matches young people with a ton of potential with highly-skilled and committed employers. That’s proving to be a winning combination for businesses and communities all over the country, so this rapid growth is very encouraging.

“It demonstrates that Modern Apprenticeships really is meeting the training needs of young people and businesses in a very practical way.

“In less than a year we’ve seen Modern Apprenticeships grow from a pilot initiative to a quality workplace learning pathway that is contributing significantly the nation’s skills base. Modern Apprenticeships is delivering the talented young people this country needs to build its knowledge economy in the years ahead,” Steve Maharey said.

The number of Mäori Modern Apprentices also grew over the last quarter to 288 at 30 September. Just over 20% of all Modern Apprentices are Mäori and Pacific learners.

Steve Maharey said a feature of Modern Apprenticeships is the amount of support provided by 46 Modern Apprenticeships Co-ordinators covering 26 industries. This has encouraged many employers to participate in industry training for the first time.

“The feedback we’re receiving from employers indicates that the majority of these firms would not have become involved in industry training without Modern Apprenticeships.

“The Government applauds the work of Modern Apprenticeships Co-ordinators to date in helping to establish Modern Apprenticeships. Their efforts are helping more young New Zealanders gain tertiary skills and qualifications,” he said.

Modern Apprenticeships are available in a diverse range of industries, including agriculture, baking, boatbuilding, building and construction, dairy manufacturing, electrotechnology, electricity supply, engineering, flooring, forestry, furniture, hospitality, plastics, printing, the public sector, road transport and telecommunications.


For more information about Modern Apprenticeships visit www.modern-apprenticeships.govt.nz.

Ends

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