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72 new marine apprentice graduates bode well for growing industry

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

At a graduation event held last night at the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron, 72 new marine and composites apprentice graduates were applauded for completing their studies. The NZ Marine and Composites Industry Training Organisation (NZMACITO), provides 3-4 year apprenticeships across the marine and composites sectors - both of which have strong forecasts for growth.

"We’re incredibly proud of our new graduates," says NZMACITO general manager, Chris van der Hor.

"The New Zealand marine and composites sectors are known around the world for their innovation and we know these graduates will become the future leaders who push the boundaries of what we can achieve in this industry even further."

Peter Beck, CEO, CTO and founder of Rocket Lab was on hand to delight the 220-strong audience with stories of his career. Making the connection between learning on the job and industry innovation, Beck inspired new graduates with his trajectory from apprentice to world-renowned innovator.

Also on hand was Josh Williams of the Industry Training Federation.

"It was a real pleasure to salute our newest marine and composites graduates, and also to thank their employers on behalf of the industry training and apprenticeship system," says Williams.

"By training apprentices they’ve not just put people on a pathway to individual success, but they’ve also secured the future for their industry, which in turn secures our economy and creates thriving communities." The NZMACITO was recently named best marine apprenticeship programme in the world at Amsterdam’s Boat Builder Awards and has 425 apprentices in training.

"Our apprentice numbers are forecast to continue to grow in 2019," says van der Hor. "Something which speaks volumes about the growth of the marine and composites industries as well as the value of on-the-job training."

Three special awards were handed out during the evening to recognise standout graduates. Joshua Salthouse (Angus Small Electrical) and Ryan van der Lee (Sealegs International) were each awarded a Rotary Youth Leadership Award while an inaugural Dale Carnegie Scholarship for best trainer or mentor in the workplace went to Michael Langley of Tristram Marine.

NZMAC ITO was appointed by the New Zealand government to develop professional qualifications and set standards for the marine and composites industries. To accomplish that, it works with apprentices, employers and training providers to ensure high quality training. Other nominees for the award included high profile companies and training organisations from a wide spread of countries.

There have been over 2000 graduates of the programme, of whom many are now running boatbuilding or marine service companies around the world.

The NZMACITO is part of the NZ Marine Industry Association and aids apprentices I learning practical, transferable skills. It’s already proven so successful that it’s been licensed by other training providers around the world - something which is expected to increase with this award.

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