The Federal Government has opened an Industry Training Hub on the Central Coast to help senior high school students find a career path.
Temporarily operating from premises in Tuggerah, the hub will be permanently located in Gosford in coming weeks.
It is one of 10 being trialled across the country as part of the Federal Government’s $50.6M investment to improve opportunities for year 11 and 12 students in regions with high youth unemployment.
Minister for Employment, Workforce, Skills, Small and Family Business, Stuart Robert, said young people can face longer periods of unemployment than other age groups, and in regional areas are particularly at risk of falling into the trap of long-term welfare dependency.
“We want to get more young Australians into high-quality jobs; it is why we are investing over $6.4B on skills and training to fund our jobs plan this year which includes our Industry Training Hubs like this one in Gosford,” Robert said.
“Regardless of which path they choose, we are committed to assisting young people across the Central Coast to build skills today that help them get into the jobs of tomorrow.
“Importantly, the Gosford Training Hub will help promote the many opportunities in the vocational education and training sector as a first-choice career option that may have been overlooked in the past.”
Each training hub is managed by a full-time Career Facilitator, who will help create better linkages between schools and local industry and encourage students to focus on developing skills for occupations most relevant to their region.
Federal Member for Robertson, Lucy Wicks, said the Career Facilitator will engage with local employers who are experiencing difficulty finding people with the skills they need and advise senior high school students to help them develop right skills for the right jobs.
“By helping our students build skills and enter the workforce, young people across the Central Coast will develop the skillset and confidence they need to take on a fulfilling job with long-term benefits,” Wicks said.
“Establishing an Industry Training Hub here in Gosford is an important part in building a strong workforce that meets the need of our region.”
The contract for delivering the hub was awarded to the NSW Business Chamber, which has nominated Michael Brolly to deliver Industry Training Hub services in Gosford and the surrounding areas.
Brolly comes to the position with a wealth of experience.
“I spent the last 10 years with Apprenticeship Support Australia, dealing with young people, schools, government agencies and employers across multiple industries,” he said.
“As Career Facilitator I will be working closely with schools, industry and other relevant stakeholders to identify current and emerging skills opportunities.
“I will be exploring employment options in the region with a focus on trades and other occupations delivered by the Vocational Education and Training (VET) sector.”
A key part of the program is to engage senior school students across the Coast.
“We’ll be going through careers advisers and principals and we would also like to see parents involved,” Brolly said.
“We’ll also be dealing with registered training organisations, group training organisations and Training Services NSW and liaising with industry groups.
“Manufacturing is one of the key industries emerging on Coast that has skill shortages and building and construction is also a massive area.”
Brolly said there was also a need for more workers in business administration roles and in the medical services industry.
Brolly said many had the misconception that working in manufacturing meant a job on a production line, but there were many career opportunities in the sector.
“We have an industry there (involving) robotics, research divisions, technology advancement, production, food sciences, and apprenticeships in such areas as electrics and engineering,” he said.
“It is a much broader industry as far as career pathways go than many people realise.
“We want to open students up to those types of opportunities.”