Capital funding to support WIT craft apprenticeship programmes

Engineering
Pictured: WIT's Applied Technology building.

Pictured: WIT's Applied Technology building.

Funding will enable WIT to provide apprentices with training in the most up to date techniques; equipment needs were identified by the HEA and SOLAS

The Minister for Education and Skills Joe McHugh T.D., together with the Minister of State for Higher Education Mary Mitchell O’Connor T.D. and Minister of State for Training, Skills, Innovation and Research and Development John Halligan T.D. today announced capital funding for ten institutions including Waterford Institute of Technology.

Plumbing, electrical and motor apprentices are to benefit from the €320,000 funding allocated to WIT.

Albert Byrne, Head of Apprenticeship and Engineering Technology at WIT’s School of Engineering explains how the capital funding will be used.

“We welcome the funding from the government, as it allows us to develop further a centre of excellence in craft apprenticeship, allowing the apprentices to be trained on the most up to date equipment.”

Modernisation

The funding forms part of the Government’s commitment, under Project Ireland 2040, to increase investment in higher and further education and training and to the modernisation of equipment available for craft apprenticeship provision.

Minister McHugh said: “The Government is deeply committed to expanding the apprenticeship system and this investment reaffirms that. Ensuring that our young people and those retraining have access to cutting edge equipment and the latest thinking on sustainability is key to further developing this increasingly-popular option for training and progression.

“Apprenticeships offer fantastic opportunities and I would encourage any person looking at their career options, especially students preparing to sit exams this week, to strongly consider the many benefits of apprenticeship.”

New syllabi

Nationwide this funding will support the roll-out of new syllabi for apprenticeships in Plumbing, Carpentry, Electrical, Brickwork, Motor Painting and Decorating, Vehicle Body Repair, Fitting, Toolmaking and Wood Manufacturing and Finishing.

It will enable institutes to provide apprentices with training in the most up to date techniques. The equipment needs have been identified by the HEA, in conjunction with SOLAS.

Minister Mitchell O’Connor said: “I am delighted that over €7.5 million is being invested to support the modernisation of the syllabi and to purchase new equipment for our apprenticeship programmes in our IoTs and TU Dublin. It will ensure that our apprenticeships have the best possible experience, keep pace with new methods and technologies in the workplace and are trained to the highest level possible.”

Minister Halligan said: “This Government is committed to more than doubling the number of new apprentices registered and the number of apprenticeships on offer over the lifetime of the Action Plan to Expand Apprenticeship and Traineeship. Budget 2019 allocated €142m for apprenticeship training, an increase of over 16% on the previous year. This will allow for the delivery of 10 more apprenticeship programmes and over 7,000 new apprenticeship registrations in 2019 alone.”


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