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Marine Engineering Traineeship Launched in Kerry

23rd March 2019
Marine Engineering Traineeship Launched in Kerry

A Marine Engineering Traineeship was launched this month with the overall aims of attracting new employees into the marine industry and providing them with the basic skills to allow them to work effectively from the start of their employment. 

The training programme has been developed by a steering group of boat building and maintenance employers (Brian O’Sullivan - Marine, Tralee; Ger Sullivan - Bere Island Boatyard; and Murphy - Murphy Marine Services, Valentia); in conjunction with Kerry ETB as partner.

The programme will also help to address any skills gaps that existing employers within the industry are experiencing.

The Marine Engineering Traineeship is the first of its kind in Ireland, dedicated solely to the requirements of the Marine Industry, with focus on the skills needed for the service and maintenance of commercial fishing vessels. At the marine industry employs several thousand persons in Ireland with over two hundred employers providing maintenance and repair services. The majority of employers are located in rural areas, and the traineeship will provide support in providing highly skilled prospective employees.

The traineeship will be run as a pilot programme starting in September 2019. Chairperson of the development group, Brian O’Sullivan ( Marine, Tralee) highlighted “This traineeship presents a great opportunity for the industry to engage with a dedicated skills development programme, which will enhance the industry as a whole in future years. The pilot programme will be fully reviewed after the first running, and the traineeship will evolve as we identify other elements which are important to employers.”The traineeship will run for a total of 32 weeks, including 9 weeks of work placement with a suitable employer. Christy Enright, who is coordinating the programme on behalf of Kerry ETB, highlighted that “The training is fully funded, as in, there are no course fees. This provides an ideal opportunity for those seeking employment within the industry to gain a range of valuable skills, and for employers to upskill their staff.

The trainees will get the opportunity to apply their skills with a suitable employer through the work experience towards the end of the traineeship.”The traineeship will also provide a significant level of health and safety training, which would ordinarily need to be provided by an employer. The training will include, for example, First Aid, Manual Handling, Abrasive Wheel and Safe Pass training as well as Powerboat Level 1 and 2 and VHF licences. The main elements of the traineeship will include the following:

• Introduction to the Marine Industry

• Principles of boatbuilding technology

• Marine Engineering processes and principles

• Composite manufacture for marine construction

• Servicing and maintenance of marine engines

• Basic fabrication, welding and machining.

On successful completion trainees will receive a City & Guilds Level 2 Certificate in Marine Construction, Systems Engineering & Maintenance. Enright also noted; “The traineeship offers a rich learning experience by combining periods of tuition with periods of supervised work practice. This gives participants the time to acquire and perfect the variety and standard of skills required by employers. In over 30% of the traineeship will be On the Job learning.

The period of on the job work experience also provides an ideal opportunity for an employer to review the skills of the trainee” The traineeship will serve as a programme for the marine industry. O’Sullivan noted that “Trainees will enhance their skills further on the job with their prospective employers, and in time may specialise in a particular area. The Steering Group is planning further programmes to support the industry and trainees who wish to progress their careers further.” Others will be co-opted onto the Steering Group as the need arises.

Published in Marine Trade Team

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