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Modern apprentice numbers increase at MIT

Thursday, 19 October 2006

Modern apprentice numbers increase at MIT as industry demands more

Manukau Institute of Technology has seen a rise in the number of apprentice enrolments in the past 12 months, signalling increased industry demand for well-qualified tradespeople, according to MIT director of Technology, Paul Jeurrissen.

This increase in numbers at MIT reflects the ongoing expansion of the modern apprenticeship programme and its importance to New Zealand industry and business, he adds.

“The rise from 154 to 178 active apprentices at MIT over the past 12 months gives credence to this trend and we anticipate further growth,” says Paul.

“MIT has the capacity to increase the number of modern apprentices it trains each year to 500. We would aspire to reach that figure in the future, as demand for both the programme’s benefits, from students, and specific skills, from industry, continues to grow at a rapid rate.”

The employment opportunities and demand for tradespeople highlights how significant this programme is for the Counties Manukau region. A Manukau City Council report, called “Manukau Future Skills Demand Projection” (2004-2011), cites construction as one of the industries that offer the most employment opportunities.

The report highlights the projected demand for builders (including building contractors), carpenters and joiners, electricians, metal trade people and motor mechanics, among others.

“This report indicates precisely why we have to continue to drive and support the modern apprenticeship scheme. While the report shows even more employment opportunities for tradespeople, we are already seeing a significant need for their skills in the region and our enrolments reflect that,” adds Paul. “The Counties Manukau region currently boasts 456 modern apprentices.”

The Industry Training and Modern Apprenticeships statistics for the quarter ending 30 June, 2006 show that as at June 2006 123,202 industry trainees were in training. This is an increase of 11.4% on the June 2005 figure of 110,605. And as at 30 June 2006, 9171 modern apprentices were in training, an increase of 333 modern apprentices on the previous quarter. This is a 12.8% increase on the 30 June 2005 figure of 8127.

MIT runs modern apprenticeship programmes in several industry sectors, including automotive, electro-technology, engineering and plastics. The institute hosts around 200 modern apprentices each year through industry training organisations, but is keen to boost this number on the back of government plans to inject a further $34.4 million over the next four years to expand the number of modern apprenticeships to 14,000 by December 2008.


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