Regional Development Australia (RDA) Hunter welcomes the release this week of the Australian Government’s first national framework which aims to coordinate efforts to meet workforce skills needs. The new Defence Industry Skilling and STEM Strategy builds on RDA Hunter’s ME Program model which was developed as part of the Government’s Schools Pathways Program.
Launched by Minister for Defence Industry, The Hon Steven Ciobo MP at the Australian International Airshow and Aerospace and Defence Expo (Avalon 2019) in Victoria, the Strategy has been developed to ensure Australian defence industry has a workforce with the right skills to meet future capability requirements.
In releasing the Strategy Minister Ciobo said, “The strategy is part of the Government’s plan to grow a robust, resilient and internationally competitive Australian defence industrial base that is better able to help meet defence capability requirements,”
“Australia’s defence industry is about to enter a new era of growth, thanks to our record $200 billion investment in defence capability, with opportunities in trades, advanced manufacturing, engineering, ICT, cyber security and other fields across Australia.
“There is a long-lead time to developing many of the skills needed by defence industry which is why we’ve developed this strategy.” Minister Ciobo continued.
RDA Hunter Chair, Mr John Turner welcomed the Government’s Strategy saying,
“Recognition of the ME Program in this new national Strategy is testament to the commitment of RDA Hunter’s industry and school partners to deliver high quality experiences and information to Hunter students and teachers,”
“We thank the Australian Government and its National Defence Industry Workforce and Skills Facilitator, Mr Stephen Hayes MBE – who visited the Hunter in August 2018 to help him fully understand the reach and impact of our program – for recognising our successful industry schools partnership model and the work we’ve undertaken to contribute to a skilled Australian workforce.”
RDA Hunter’s Director of Regional Development and EO, Mr Trevor John said, “Now in its 11th year, the ME Program is widely recognised for achieving genuine outcomes. The current and former ME Program managers and members of the implementation team can rightly be proud of their contributions to improving STEM education, defence industry career awareness and development of a skilled workforce.”
“We look forward to our continued partnership with the Department of Defence and building on our contribution to a smart, skilled and defence-ready Australian workforce behind the Defence force.” continued Mr John.