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Tasmanian printers back Holmesglen plan

Wednesday, 13 December 2017
By Graham Osborne
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‘Fantastic support’: Robert Black from Holmesglen TAFE at the Tasmanian Printing Convention.

Print companies in Tasmania have overwhelmingly backed a plan by Victoria-based Holmesglen TAFE to provide a new apprenticeship training model in the state.

The issue of industry training was on top of the agenda at the PIAA’s inaugural Tasmanian Printing Convention held in Ross on Friday.

“We received absolutely fantastic support from local printing companies for our proposal,” says Robert Black, programme manager (printing), Holmesglen TAFE, who was a guest speaker at the event.

Holmesglen TAFE recently made a formal application to the Tasmanian government to deliver printing apprenticeship training in the state when the existing program run by TAFE SA ends in the new year.

“We’re proposing the same kind of training we’ve developed in Victoria,” says Black. “It’s a blended model that includes a balanced approach between on-the-job and structured training that is focused on the individual needs of printing companies. The support we received at the convention was overwhelming.”

(l-r) Peter Clark (PIAA Board) with Craig Pearce (Flying Colours Printing) at the TPC in Ross.

Andrew Macaulay, CEO of Printing Industries, also a guest speaker at the event, says the convention delivered a strong message that the association should continue its focus on vocational education and training.  “The inclusion of a current and recently qualified apprentice in the meeting enabled considerable insight. We really value the at-times robust discussion and input from a wide variety of business representatives from all over Tasmania. It was apparent how much local industry want to support our advocacy initiatives, and are prepared to assist in whatever way possible.”

Macaulay last month described the apprenticeship system as being ‘in crisis,’ after data from the Productivity Commission revealed that total apprenticeships in Australia have fallen from 500,000 to 275,000 over the last five years.

A print room at Holmesglen TAFE in Victoria.

Black is now waiting to hear from the Tasmania government on the Holmesglen proposal. “We’re not sure when the decision will be made but we’re hoping for a positive outcome. We have the capacity to deliver quality training to the companies and to the apprentices, and we believe we have the full support of the industry.”

At the inaugural Tasmanian Printing Convention – (l-r) Shane Brooks (Fairfax), Martin Guilliamse (Mark Media), and Gary Nilsson (Mercury Walch).

The convention agenda included apprenticeship training, as well as book printing, industrial relations and the national and state print awards.

At the TPC – (l-r) Michelle Smith (Norske Skog) Mitche Fenner (Fairfax) Ben Holland (Fairfax).





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