New Construction and Engineering training facilities for Whitireia Community Polytechnic were opened today by Porirua City Deputy Mayor Izzy Ford. A ceremony marking the occasion was led by Taku Parai of Ngāti Toa with iwi elders present. Construction and engineering companies along with government agencies and secondary schools also attended the opening.
"I’m proud as a Porirua resident to see investment into our community in new construction and engineering trades training facilities," said Izzy Ford.
Chris Gosling, Chief Executive of Whitireia and WelTec, noted that the new expanded automotive engineering and construction facilities represented a significant asset for the community and provided an improved learning environment which would see learners thrive. With 200 students on site already and opportunities to enrol in mid-year programmes numbers are expected to increase.
"The construction and engineering learning facilities are a step forward towards the achievement of the Wellington Regional School of Construction and the Wellington School of Engineering at Porirua and Petone delivered via the strategic partnership between Whitireia and WelTec. This allows learners to progress from entry level, to pre-trades and trades qualifications at Porirua; and equivalent and further higher level study at Petone," said Chris Gosling.
"Trades training is part of Whitireia core delivery with almost 200 students studying construction and engineering trades qualifications currently and further intakes throughout the year."
Graham Carson, Head of Engineering at Whitireia and WelTec, announced additional automotive programmes would be offered in July to meet demand. "Getting qualified as an automotive technician can lead to a rewarding career considering the new technology in the automotive industry with hybrid and electric vehicles becoming more popular in the future."
Head of Construction Neil McDonald noted many job opportunities for graduates completing a construction qualification. "The Wellington construction industry is looking for skilled graduates. Through our new expanded delivery on the Whitireia campus we are producing motivated work-ready students looking to take the next step to becoming a qualified tradesperson."
Guests at the opening toured through a three-bedroom house being built by students which is to be used for state housing by Housing New Zealand.