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- Tips for choosing course preferences
- The pros and cons of immediate postgraduate study
- How to choose a course if you're not sure what you want to do
- Returning to study as a mature age student
- Why choose a double degree?
- Preparing for university open days
- How to keep to a budget while at uni
- How to get the most out of your course
- An update on Victoria's TAFE cuts
- Five uni myths debunked
- News for apprentices and trainees
- Why you should consider mid-year entry
- The facts about private providers
- Australian graduate employment prospects
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- Australian universities perform well in global rankings
- Getting the most out of student services
- How to beat the post-holiday blues
- HECS to increase for maths and science degrees
- Uni offers — first preference is not the only option
- Change of preference tips
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- The top five study apps for university students
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- Australian universities excel in Shanghai Jiao Tong rankings
- Five tips if you're planning to drop out of your course
- HECS repayment discounts reduced
- Five tips for tackling open days
- Demand-driven funding to benefit students
- Incentives to study maths and science
- New media technologies at university
- Five benefits of completing an internship
- What's going on with VSU
News for apprentices and trainees
If you’re thinking about beginning an apprenticeship or traineeship — or are already midway through your training — read on for an update of what’s been happening in the sector.
National Skills Needs list
The federal government regularly updates its National Skills Needs list, which identifies trades with shortages of skilled workers and provides incentives for both trainees and employers to undertake and support training. Some of the occupations identified are automotive electrician, baker, electronic equipment tradesperson, hairdresser, landscape gardener, panel beater, pastry cook, refrigeration and air-conditioning mechanic and wood machinist. (See the link above for a full list.)
Government allowances and support programs
The Australian Government has continued to provide and develop allowances and support programs for apprentices and trainees. Some of these include the Living Away From Home Allowance , which can help with the costs of moving away from home to take up training and Tools For Your Trade — a program that provides tax-free payments to help cover the costs of training, the purchase of tools, as well as any other costs incurred during the training program.
The government also runs a number of support programs, including the Australian Apprenticeships Access Program , which provides support and assistance to obtain and maintain an apprenticeship and the Australian Apprenticeships Mentoring Program , which aims to improve retention and completion rates — in turn, supporting the supply of skilled workers to sectors and occupations where they are needed. A full list of programs and initiatives is available on the Australian Apprenticeships website (see below).
Employment outcomes for apprentices and trainees
The National Centre for Vocational Education Research (NCVER, 2010) found that more than 90 per cent of apprentices and trainees who completed their training in 2009 found employment within nine months. Of those who found work, almost 70 per cent had remained with the same employer who had facilitated their training. Salaries for full-time workers were around $48,200 (similar to that of many university graduates), and 87 per cent of qualified apprentices and trainees were satisfied with the quality of their training.
Federal and State government funding for the vocational education and training sector
Meanwhile, the 2012–13 federal budget has promised to ensure better access to education and training, with an investment of approximately $110 million since 2011 in projects such as the National Workforce Development Fund, which will help drive more people toward completing a qualification. In direct contrast, the Victorian Government has announced major cuts to TAFE funding, meaning that Vocational Education and Training (VET) providers have been forced to re-evaluate their program offerings (in many cases, discontinuing courses) and reconsider the costs required for staff and student support services.
At this stage, the numbers of courses to be cut is unclear, and it is not known whether they will affect trade qualifications. It is possible that low-demand courses, or those which do not provide training related to the National Skills Needs occupations (see above), may be cut by TAFE institutes.
- Australian Apprenticeships — The Job Guide’s guide to Australian Apprenticeships
- Australian Apprenticeships — official Australian Government website for apprenticeship and traineeship information
- Centrelink allowances — Department of Human Services’ guide to studying and training allowances
- Completing an apprenticeship or traineeship