Critical industry forum

Critical industry forum

10 Nov 2010

A critical industry forum to be held in Bendigo on Tuesday 16 November will investigate new approaches to developing relevant skills sets that meet the region’s future labour needs for engineering and related industries. 

Blue print The forum and ensuing consultations with industry, tertiary education providers and local government will examine the viability and sustainability of new programs in mechanical engineering and/or mechatronic engineering and the degree of acceptance and support by industry of one or more proposed models for training.  

Professor Brian McGaw, Dean, Faculty of Science Technology and Engineering, La Trobe University and Chair of the Engineering Working Party said mechanical engineering has been identified as a gap in the skills needs of regional Victoria.

‘The Engineering Working Party was formed after recognition by education and local government sectors in Bendigo that if industry and education could better understand each other and find a way to work in collaboration, significant strides could be made to address workforce shortage needs in the region and stimulate broad economic growth,’ said Professor McGaw.  

‘Mechanical engineering has the potential to be introduced to the region as a shared delivery model that includes higher and vocational education elements and strong work integrated learning components, supported by industry,’ said Professor McGaw.  

‘Such a model has benefits in it for everyone – increased student numbers, increased skills in the local workforce and broader benefits to the economy,’ said Professor McGaw.  

‘Our aim is to improve both the rates of tertiary education and the supply of skilled workers in regional Victoria,’ he added.
The Engineering Working Party- a collaboration between La Trobe University, the City of Greater Bendigo, Bendigo TAFE and the Bendigo Manufacturing Group - has engaged a consultant to carry out a detailed analysis of the viability of such a model and the forum is an opportunity for industry to contribute to the feasibility process. 

‘We encourage and welcome anyone whose business has direct or indirect exposure to engineering skills shortages to participate in the forum, so that their views can be heard as we examine the extent to which this innovative collaboration can support skills shortages in regional Victoria,’ Professor McGaw said.

Professor McGaw said findings will be handed down in early 2011. ‘Meanwhile the EWP will continue to work on identifying further opportunities for partnership that involve collaboration to increase the economic outcomes for the community,’ he said.

The industry forum is at 7.00 – 8.30 am on Tuesday 16 November, at the La Trobe University Visual Arts Centre, 121 View Street, Bendigo.

Media enquiries
Lisa Farrar Ph (03) 5444 7779  M 0400 108 152

Issued by
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