Working closely with industry to promote careers, train staff

LETTER

The two-page spread referred to was to promote degree programmes following the EIT graduation. Forestry programmes are being promoted in the next EIT Korero magazine.

Both EIT and Turanga Ararau work closely with industry to provide quality training. However, it is well known to us and the industry itself that recruitment to forestry is challenging. EIT works with an advisory committee from industry and Turanga Ararau is in constant contact with and responsive to forestry contractors and companies. Both organisations continue to run forestry programmes, although at a cost due to low enrolments, and are committed to supporting the local industry, iwi and the wider region.

For EIT, of the students who enrolled on forestry programmes in 2016, 74 percent completed the programme, 26 percent withdrew. Of those who completed, 63 percent failed the post-training, pre-employment drug test, and 19 percent went on to work in the industry. The others went to further training or employment in other areas.

For Turanga Ararau, the major challenge, particularly for our logging courses, is attracting students who are prepared to be drug-free and committed to working in the industry. We are well aware of the demand for skilled labour and have had a number of potential students finding work and leaving us even during their two-week trial period before they are enrolled.

Prior to this year, the bulk of our funding for forestry training was for targeted youth aged 16-19 years and long-term unemployed. Of the students who completed our programmes in 2016, 60 percent found work in the industry with the majority still there — although they do move between contractors. Over the years we have also had some success promoting forestry as a career through high school STAR and Gateway programmes, with some of the students finding employment in harvesting crews and others enrolling on our forestry management programme.

The school leaver intention survey from 2016 shows just five Year 13 students indicating an interest in forestry as a career. There is work to be done to encourage more people to view forestry as a career that will contribute to this region. That is not something training providers can do alone, and does include the wider social question relating to high drug use and how the industry itself is viewed.

Eastland Wood Council recognises the need for a skilled workforce and, as production increases, that need becomes a priority. Hence we are focused on working together with training providers to achieve the right model along with continuing our work in promotion to change the perception of our industry to the community. We value the right information being disseminated that encourages positive engagement in an industry that provides significant economic return for the region. We welcome any ideas the writer has to address the situation.

Prue Younger

Eastland Wood Council chief executive

Sharon Maynard

Turanga Ararau manager

Jan Mogford

EIT Tairawhiti campus director

The two-page spread referred to was to promote degree programmes following the EIT graduation. Forestry programmes are being promoted in the next EIT Korero magazine.

Both EIT and Turanga Ararau work closely with industry to provide quality training. However, it is well known to us and the industry itself that recruitment to forestry is challenging. EIT works with an advisory committee from industry and Turanga Ararau is in constant contact with and responsive to forestry contractors and companies. Both organisations continue to run forestry programmes, although at a cost due to low enrolments, and are committed to supporting the local industry, iwi and the wider region.

For EIT, of the students who enrolled on forestry programmes in 2016, 74 percent completed the programme, 26 percent withdrew. Of those who completed, 63 percent failed the post-training, pre-employment drug test, and 19 percent went on to work in the industry. The others went to further training or employment in other areas.

For Turanga Ararau, the major challenge, particularly for our logging courses, is attracting students who are prepared to be drug-free and committed to working in the industry. We are well aware of the demand for skilled labour and have had a number of potential students finding work and leaving us even during their two-week trial period before they are enrolled.

Prior to this year, the bulk of our funding for forestry training was for targeted youth aged 16-19 years and long-term unemployed. Of the students who completed our programmes in 2016, 60 percent found work in the industry with the majority still there — although they do move between contractors. Over the years we have also had some success promoting forestry as a career through high school STAR and Gateway programmes, with some of the students finding employment in harvesting crews and others enrolling on our forestry management programme.

The school leaver intention survey from 2016 shows just five Year 13 students indicating an interest in forestry as a career. There is work to be done to encourage more people to view forestry as a career that will contribute to this region. That is not something training providers can do alone, and does include the wider social question relating to high drug use and how the industry itself is viewed.

Eastland Wood Council recognises the need for a skilled workforce and, as production increases, that need becomes a priority. Hence we are focused on working together with training providers to achieve the right model along with continuing our work in promotion to change the perception of our industry to the community. We value the right information being disseminated that encourages positive engagement in an industry that provides significant economic return for the region. We welcome any ideas the writer has to address the situation.

Prue Younger

Eastland Wood Council chief executive

Sharon Maynard

Turanga Ararau manager

Jan Mogford

EIT Tairawhiti campus director

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