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Minister launches new NMIT Technical Education Centre

25 Mar 2013

Northern Melbourne Institute of TAFE (NMIT) officially launched its new Technical Education Centre (TEC) at its Heidelberg campus today.

Opened by the Minister for Skills and Workforce Participation, Bronwyn Pike, the new $8 million facility further consolidates NMIT's commitment to providing young people with pathways to trade training, vocational learning and jobs.

Located on the corner of Bell Street and Waterdale Road, the TEC is a highly recognisable and distinctive structure, purpose-built for 15 to 20 year-olds who have not completed a Year 12 qualification. The 4200 square metre facility accommodates approximately 300 students and consists of two levels containing general learning, trade workshops, student support and administration areas.

The NMIT TEC was funded through a $32 million commitment by the Victorian Government to establish four TECs in Victoria including Heidelberg, Ballarat, Berwick and Wangaratta. The new Heidelberg facility provides a gateway to vocational education for young people, providing generic employability skills coupled with industry specific training.

"Instead of being dispersed across different NMIT campuses, our Youth Unit students now all benefit from the state-of-the-art facilities and supportive learning environment at the Heidelberg TEC," says NMIT CEO Brian MacDonald. "The TEC offers an innovative approach to training young people which combines core competencies with vocational specialisations."

The centre will provide state-of-the-art facilities and teaching programs to students enrolled in industry-specific Victorian Certificate of Applied Learning (VCAL) streams such as building and construction trades, community programs, hospitality, multimedia, music and animal studies as well as general VCAL Foundation, Intermediate and Senior programs.

In addition to VCAL, the TEC will deliver pre-apprenticeships or pre-vocational courses in specific industries including bricklaying, cabinet making, carpentry, painting, furniture, plumbing and shop fitting.

Beyond the delivery of vocational training, it is planned that the TEC will also provide:

• Professional development programs for those involved in vocational education
• Services to local schools including expos, teacher mentoring and training partnerships
• Partnerships with enterprise including NMIT owned enterprises and local industry
• General employability skills training
• Assistance with finding work experience placements with employers, negotiating apprenticeships, and accessing career information and advice.

In planning for the TEC, NMIT formed a project team which undertook extensive internal and external consultation with representatives from industry, employers, local governments and schools to identify proposed regional planning activity relevant to young people, skills shortages in specific industries and gaps in the vocational training currently available to youth.

One of the key features of the new TEC will be its focus on the needs of young people with students being able to access ongoing support, counselling and training pathways to assist them in reaching their goal of completing a qualification and finding employment.

Teachers at the TEC are drawn from the NMIT' Youth Unit as well as specific vocational teaching departments. They are experienced vocational education practitioners with an added understanding of the issues and lifestyle choices faced by young people. They are also experienced in working with young people who may have had a previously negative educational experience and/or low levels of literacy/numeracy.

In addition, Managed Individual Pathways Officers (MIPs) from NMIT's Youth Unit will assist students with staying motivated and on track to completing their qualification and seeking work.

In opening the TEC, Minister for Skills and Workforce Participation, Bronwyn Pike, stated “This new TEC will further strengthen NMIT as one of Australia's leading skills and training institutions and open up more career pathways for a new generation of Victorians.”

Video - NMIT TV - NMIT Technical Education Centre (TEC) Opening

Interview / Photo Opportunity

Media enquiries should be directed to the NMIT Communications Officer, James Gardener, on (03) 92691579, 0413 483 182 or

NMIT (Northern Melbourne Institute of TAFE) - Situated on seven campuses and six training centres throughout Melbourne's north, NMIT delivers vocational training, higher education and lifelong learning capabilities for a global workforce. NMIT forges partnerships with community, industry and government to produce practical, solution orientated graduates capable of making meaningful contributions to their chosen field of endeavour.