The Steps to Uni resource will help develop articulation arrangements, which enable students to receive credits for their WA TAFE Vocational Education and Training (VET) qualifications when they enrol in a university degree. This reduces the length of their qualification, reducing the cost of university and getting them into jobs faster.
The $720,000 program is one of the initiatives the State Government is delivering as part its $11 million investment to help ensure WA has a strong pipeline of skilled professional and para-professional workers to meet the industry’s future work demands.
Training Minister Simone McGurk further explained the program.
“The Cook Government is investing in initiatives to ensure Western Australia has a skilled defence industry workforce to attract major defence projects to the State,” he said.
“The project led by South Metropolitan TAFE is an excellent example of collaboration between WA TAFE colleges and Team WA universities to help students, while also meeting the broader industry’s demands for a skilled, professional workforce.
“Skilled engineers are in high demand by the WA defence industry, particularly systems, software, mechanical and mechatronic engineering skills.
“The expansion in articulation arrangements helps students fast-track to a university degree and a career in the defence industry,” McGurk said.
People with WA TAFE VET qualifications in engineering (Diploma and Advanced Diploma) will be the first to benefit from the Steps to Uni resource, which is now available on the Jobs and Skills WA website.
There have been almost 700 students enrolled in Diploma and Advanced Diploma engineering qualifications through WA TAFE colleges in 2023.
Engineering is the largest of the six study areas to be catalogued, with 55 existing pathways between WA TAFE colleges and universities included in the Steps to Uni resource. Through the first stage of the project, seven new articulation arrangements have been developed.
Defence Industry Minister Paul Papalia further detailed the program and what it means for the defence industry.
“WA’s defence industry is growing and needs skilled workers across the five capability domains of information and cyber, maritime, air, space, and land,” he said.
“The defence industry has fantastic career opportunities, no matter what you’re interested in, or what stage you’re at in your career.
“This Defence Industry VET Steps to Uni resource gives people a simple and easy way to plan their pathway to a university qualification.
“I encourage anyone with WA TAFE VET engineering qualifications, keen to build a career as a professional in the defence industry, to use the VET Steps to Uni resource to map out their study pathway,” Papalia said.
The Steps to Uni project has been developed thanks to significant collaboration between WA TAFE colleges and Team WA universities (Curtin University, University of Western Australia, Murdoch University and Edith Cowan University) through the WA Defence Industry VET University Articulationprogram.
The $11 million defence industry workforce package builds on the $18 million investment to boost the defence manufacturing workforce and build capacity to secure future defence work.