EIT has started working with the local roading sector ahead of a new infrastructure works training programme to overcome a skills shortage likely to result from a massive increase in roads funding for this region.
The programme will be part-time to cater for those already working in the industry.
Spearheading it is former NZ Army infrastructure machinery specialist Clint Whitewood, who also has experience in youth leadership.
Originally from Gisborne, Mr Whitewood looks forward to regular visits back home, where he is working towards implementing the new programme.
He is based at EIT’s Hawke’s Bay campus, which introduced the Infrastructure Works programme last year.
He says the programme is designed to fast-track people into the roading sector, because they will be equipped with actual experience on the most commonly used machinery, such as rollers and excavators.
He says the programme is designed to provide graduates with skills, knowledge and licences so they commence their chosen career in the infrastructure industry.
Graduates of the part time course will emerge with all the essential licence endorsements, including Wheels, Tracks, Rollers, Dangerous Goods and Forklift.
On the programme they will also acquire Level 1 Traffic Control (TC) Management and First Aid Certificates.
The qualifications are required in a variety of fields, including road construction, quarrying, traffic management, forestry, civil construction and infrastructure.
Because the programme is fees free, it will save roading contractors currently training their own unskilled recruits time and money.
“The luxury of the part-time programme is that the students already employed within the industry have the capacity to up-skill and work at the same time” says Mr Whitewood.
“It is targeted at people with good motor driving skills who will be scooped up fairly quickly with these endorsements,” he says.
The programme includes a huge emphasis on health and safety and plant and equipment maintenance which are in line with current industry-specific skills.
Anyone interested in the programme can get more information from EIT’s Gisborne office.