26 September 2023

TAFE training vessel wins an overhaul

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Central Regional TAFE’s maritime training vessel is undergoing a $2 million refurbishment to ensure its students have a first-class industry standard learning environment when it is complete.

The floating specialist but ageing vessel which is usually moored in Geraldton’s Fishing Boat Harbour has been dry-docked while it is upgraded to receive new engines, gear boxes, hydraulic system, electrics, air-conditioning and navigational systems.

The vessel is used to deliver maritime-related training through Central Regional TAFE’s Batavia Coast Maritime Institute including fishing boat operations, boating services and marine engine driving.

It also supports on-water activities for components of other training programs such as aquaculture, tourism, coastal conservation, and land management in the region.

Minister for Training, Simone McGurk said the maritime industry was crucial to Geraldton and the entire Batavia Coast.

“This upgrade will directly support employers by providing skilled workers with contemporary and industry-relevant skills,” Ms McGurk said.

“Importantly, this upgrade will boost opportunities for people in the Mid-West region to train and work locally.”

She said the revamped floating classroom would deliver a first-class training environment that would benefit the local maritime industry for many years to come.

Geraldton MLA, Lara Dalton said she had seen how important it was for the students to have hands-on experience in an industry-simulated environment.

“The training vessel ensures students are exposed to the most up-to-date and industry-relevant equipment and real-life scenarios, so they are better prepared for future employment opportunities,” Ms Dalton said.

Students are expected to be training on the newly updated vessel by May.

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