Federal Member for Flinders Greg Hunt was delighted to officially open the Trades Skills Centre at Western Port Secondary College today.
“This $1.1million facility will assist in up-skilling young people in the trades sector so they are able to take up local employment opportunities in Hastings and the surrounding area,” Mr Hunt said.
The state-of-the-art facility will have an engineering workshop with all the latest equipment to deliver qualifications in automotive and engineering to address skills shortages in the trades of fitter (general), fitter-welder, metal fabricator, motor mechanics (general), motorcycle mechanic and welder (first class).
“The Trade Skills Centre will also be used in partnership with local primary schools to deliver the Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics program,” Mr Hunt said.
“It is brilliant to see these young people thriving in a hands-on environment and learning trades that may become their future careers.
“Visiting the school you get a real sense of just how engaged these young people are in learning trades skills.
“These students are the next generation of local business owners and operators, with many having aspirations to work their way to the top and even start their own companies.”
Western Port Secondary College Principal Michael Devine said the facility would create more opportunities for students to gain trades skills.
“There are some real skills shortages across the Mornington Peninsula and this centre will help provide formal qualifications in those areas,” Mr Devine said.
“The opportunities presented by the Trades Skills Centre allow students to remain engaged in education while completing a senior secondary program.
“The school has been working hard to expand educational programs and enhance opportunities for young people in Hastings and the surrounding area and this facility will do just that.”
Trades Skills Centres build on vocational education and training in schools, while forging stronger connections between schools and industry.