VERTO welcomes the NSW Government’s $285 million investment in NSW Apprenticeships, announced yesterday as part of its state budget. The scheme will scrap fees for as many 100,000 apprentices across NSW.

VERTO’s Chief Executive Officer, Ron Maxwell, commented on the announcement, “Government funding plays a crucial role in making apprenticeships attractive and building programs that give apprentices the best chance to finish their formal training. The NSW Government’s investment is a step in the right direction in helping to alleviate the current apprenticeship drought.

“Apprenticeships have been undervalued. It is great to see the NSW Government recognising the value they provide for the economy, workers and employers. This scheme provides a welcome incentive for both school leavers and mature age job seekers to explore apprenticeship options.”

The scheme starts 1 July and will be available for new students who are about to enrol, or current students who are changing courses. The scheme is not restricted to particular trades.

“Apprenticeships extend far beyond the traditional trades. Sectors such as automotive, hospitality, and agriculture are all crying out for skilled workers; a challenge which apprenticeships play a crucial part in solving.

“Our future workforce needs to see apprenticeships as an attractive option, not just an alternative if they miss out on university entry. With a range of industries now reaching crisis point in terms of skills shortages, the NSW Government scheme is more important than ever,” concluded Maxwell.