Challenger TAFE engineers skills shortage solutions

Tuesday, 11 March 2008

Innovative training methods at Challenger TAFE are helping to combat the engineering skills shortage by attracting students in record numbers.

With the number of qualified engineers at a critically low level, the College has achieved increased enrolments of engineering students, particularly in flexible delivery mode where students can study at their own pace.

The College’s Director of Defence and Resource Industries, Greg Guppy, said tackling the skills shortage required new approaches and that their initiatives were producing excellent results.

“The high number of enrolments is very encouraging because it shows the innovation we’ve been fostering is producing positive outcomes in terms of addressing workforce shortages.

“Challenger TAFE are unique in offering flexible delivery in engineering, and the success of that shows we can reverse negative trends in para-professional enrolments by responding to student and industry needs,” he said.

For 23 year-old of Rockingham resident, Danielle Roberts, flexible delivery is essential in helping balance her workload at defence contractor, Tenix, with her Mechanical Engineering studies and the demands of being a single mum.

“Flexible delivery makes it possible for me to meet all the competing commitments I have, both at home and at work,” she said.

“I attend TAFE one day a week as part of my employment, and can meet the rest of my study requirements through the flexible delivery mode.

 “I know flexible delivery makes it much easier for those working on a fly-in fly-out basis to complete their studies,” she added.

Danielle also praised her lecturers for their dedication.

“Unlike other learning environments I’ve been in, you really get the personal interaction you need with the lecturers at Challenger TAFE,” she said.

“They’ll come and sit with you during their breaks to make sure there are no problems.

“To learn from lecturers who have actual industry experience is essential because they understand the practical situations engineers face,” she added.

Challenger TAFE Engineering Lecturer, Cindy Egan, said many engineering courses were effectively seeing full employment rates for graduates.

“Apart from international students with visa restrictions, all Advanced Diploma graduates in Civil Engineering are finding employment,” she said.

“This is a fantastic result, and we anticipate this trend will continue as the demand for engineering personnel increases.

Back to Top