Varley Group, EDC Consultants and Cummins South Pacific are among 16 Hunter industry partners to this week host participants of the 2018 STEMship Program for the work placement module of the 17 week initiative.

Participants, who are undertaking work experience in STEM and defence sectors in roles as diverse as shipwright, electrician, diesel mechanic and systems engineer, have been matched to targeted Hunter workplaces based on their interests and expertise – with the aim of gaining apprenticeships or technical traineeships.

“Following preparatory TAFE modules that introduced them to project-based learning principles and enterprise skills – now in high demand by employers – participants were excited to join ‘real’ workplaces across the Hunter to put their skills into action,” said RDA Hunter’s STEM Workforce Manager, Rick Evans.

“STEMship has proven an invaluable pathway to employment for our previous participants. Last year we placed 12 of our 16 young people in apprenticeships at the end of the 17 weeks so we’re hoping that we’ll have similar success with the 2018 cohort.” he continued.

2018 STEMship Industry Partners: Varley Group, AmpControl, EDC, Hummingbird Electronics, UAV Air, Obelisk Systems, Cummins South Pacific, Hedweld Group, AV Living Port Stephens, Bluewater Cruising Yachts, Tomago Aluminium, PBE Rutherford, Advantage Electrical, Coastal Shipwright Services, Inovin Industries, Mat Brown Building

STEMship is a Hunter based program developed in 2016 by RDA Hunter and the Department of Industry – Training Services NSW and delivered by TAFE NSW – Hunter. In 2018, the program is coordinated by RDA Hunter and funded by the NSW Department of Industry. The multi-disciplinary training component is delivered by TAFE NSW.

The STEMship is an innovative Vocational Education and Training (VET) pre-employment program incorporating Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics and entrepreneurship skills and capabilities. It is designed to provide a VET pathway for secondary school students as an alternate pathway to employment and/or further study. It aims to promote job creation in the Hunter Region by providing a talent pool of work ready employees for industries such as Defence and Advanced Manufacturing.