Capital funding of just over €8million has been announced for 10 Institutes of Technology. The funding will enable the institutions to purchase equipment and carry out enabling works for the implementation of new syllabi for four existing apprenticeships in Electrical, Heavy Vehicle Mechanics, Metal Fabrication and Plumbing. Funding is also being provided to purchase equipment and carry out enabling works for a new apprenticeship in Pipefitting in Cork Institute of Technology.
This funding is being provided by the Department of Education and Skills through the Higher Education Authority (HEA).
The apprenticeships will take the form of structured education programmes and training which will formally combine and alternate learning in the workplace with learning in a classroom setting. An apprenticeship prepares participants for a specific occupation and leads to a qualification on the National Framework of Qualifications. Since the 1970s it is estimated that over 105,000 apprentices have been trained in Ireland. In 2016 there were over 3,800 new apprenticeship registrations. There is a current population of 10,316 apprentices with 3,919 participating employers (December 2016).
The recently published Action Plan to expand Apprenticeship and Traineeship in Ireland sets out how state agencies, education and training providers and employers will work together to deliver on the Action Plan for Education’s commitments on the expansion of apprenticeship and traineeship in the period to 2020. The plan contains a commitment to enrol 31,000 people on apprenticeship programmes in the period 2016-2020 which represents a near doubling on current activity.
Announcing the funding, Minister for Education and Skills, Richard Bruton TD said:
“This supports our objective to expand apprenticeships and traineeships in the period to 2020 and ensure they are an attractive path for people to take. We plan to more than double the number of annual Apprenticeship and Traineeship registrations to 14,000 by 2020.
“Apprenticeships and traineeships give an exciting career path for many young people. As well as modernising existing apprenticeships we are also focused on supporting the development of new programmes.”
To view more details about apprenticeship opportunities and information view www.apprenticeship.ie