The NSW Government will offer 100,000 free apprenticeships as part of an unprecedented level of support for apprentices in NSW Budget 2018, which will ensure there is a strong pipeline of skilled workers across the State.
Premier Gladys Berejiklian, Treasurer Dominic Perrottet and Deputy Premier and Minister for Skills John Barilaro announced the new $285 million skills and training package at Southern Cross Catholic Vocational College in Burwood.
Ms Berejiklian said the free apprenticeships will be on offer in any course at TAFE and non-TAFE providers approved to deliver apprenticeship programs, removing the financial pressure apprentices face.
“We have already created positions for apprentices by ensuring 20 per cent of trade roles on all future NSW Government projects will be filled by apprentices and now we are covering the cost of training,” Ms Berejiklian said.
“The decisions we are taking now help us to capitalise on our record infrastructure program by creating the electricians, plumbers and mechanics NSW needs.”
Mr Barilaro said while NSW is home to around 60,000 apprentices, the State needs more to continue to deliver the roads, rail, schools and hospitals the NSW Government is investing in, and to meet the demand created by a booming economy.
“As an ex-tradie turned Skills Minister, it is extremely rewarding to be delivering this free training opportunity, particularly for our youngest workers,” Mr Barilaro said.
“This sort of free training offer has never been made before, so I encourage people thinking about skilling up, or starting a new career to make the most of it.”
Mr Perrottet said that being in a position to offer fee-free apprenticeships is a result of the hard work the NSW Government has done to get its budget in shape and boost the NSW economy.
“The NSW economy is humming, and as a result NSW has the best jobs market in the nation. We’re seeing record numbers of jobs being created, and we want to make sure we are equipping a workforce with the skills necessary to meet future demand,” Mr Perrottet said.
“There are an abundance of opportunities available for the next generation, and we want to make it as attractive as possible for them to take up a trade.”
The 100,000 free apprenticeships will be on offer over the next four years and include all 121 courses currently funded under the Smart and Skilled program.
For more information including details about how to enroll from July 1, go to the Smart and Skilled website at: https://smartandskilled.nsw.gov.au/