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    Minister for Employment and Small Business and Minister for Training and Skills Development
    The Honourable Shannon Fentiman

    Apprentices top of mind as Training Minister meets Mackay employers

    Minister for Employment and Small Business and Minister for Training and Skills Development
    The Honourable Shannon Fentiman

    Wednesday, July 04, 2018

    Apprentices top of mind as Training Minister meets Mackay employers

    Mackay business owners, industry representatives and stakeholders discussed the strengths and challenges of employing apprentices with representatives from the Queensland Government today.

    Minister for Training and Skills Development Shannon Fentiman hosted the roundtable to ensure regional views would shape the government’s policies and activities so apprenticeships and traineeships continued to deliver the skilled workforce businesses and communities need.

    “It has been great to hear firsthand from Mackay residents about their successes and barriers, and their experience of taking a worker from starting a training contract through to earning their qualification,” Ms Fentiman said.

    “We have also announced the $1 million Advancing Apprentices Fund, which will partner with industry groups and businesses to produce promotional campaigns to highlight the successes apprenticeships and traineeships are producing and encourage more people and businesses to get involved.

    “The Palaszczuk Government has a good mix of funding for training, incentives for employers and information for all stakeholders available, along with strong support from industry groups and businesses, but it is important to reach out and hear what is working well and what we need to work on in this space.

    “That is the purpose of this roundtable and I have scheduled other roundtables on the Gold Coast and in Brisbane so we can consider a range of views.”

    Member for Mackay Julieanne Gilbert said that apprenticeships and traineeships offered a valuable mix of hands-on experience to go with nationally recognised qualifications.

    “Vocational education gives students a range of skills that are in demand now and that businesses and our economy will need to grow in the future,” Mrs Gilbert said.

    Ms Fentiman said that different industry sectors and regions had different experiences of how easy it was to recruit an apprentice, keep up with their training requirements, retain them to the end of their apprenticeship and then keep them on as a qualified worker.

    “This will guide our efforts to improve our system and identify ways we can encourage more people and businesses to use these pathways,” she said.

    For further information on apprenticeships and traineeships visit www.training.qld.gov.au/apprentices or call Apprenticeships Info on 1800 210 210.

    Media contact: Bernadette Condren 0417 296 116