Twenty West Australian school leavers are the inaugural inductees into the Australian Government’s Defence Industry Pathways Program (DIPP), which aims to boost Australia’s future maritime workforce.
DIPP will provide participants with the necessary skills to take up the thousands of jobs that will be required in our nation’s defence industry over the coming decades. Programmed Skilled Workforce will be involved in the program as a member of the Defence Industry Security Program, to assist with the security side of the initiative.
Developed with Western Australia’s South Metropolitan TAFE and the state’s maritime defence industry, DIPP has been designed as a ‘taster’ course that provides participants with an insight into an exciting defence industry career.
The 12-month program is open to West Australian school leavers, with up to 120 trainees able to join the program in the coming year. Trainees will be provided with exposure to a variety of shipbuilding and supply chain organisations throughout their qualification. Around 50 host employers have signed up to take on the trainees and expose them to industry experience across a broad range of areas.
Trainees are provided with pay, work attire and upon completion of the program will receive a nationally recognised Certificate III in Defence Industry Pathways. Defence industry partners will provide supervision, mentoring and on-the-job training for participants, while on-campus academic modules of the traineeship will be completed through South Metropolitan TAFE.
More than 100 young people applied to join within 90 minutes of the launch in June, a testament to the program’s early popularity.
Minister for Defence Industry Melissa Price, in a press release, said the program was helping to deliver the workforce required to meet the increasing demand for employees in Australia’s shipbuilding industry.
‘The Defence Industry Pathways Program gives them a range of career options and an understanding of defence industry before deciding which path they take when they enter the workforce,’ Minister Price said.
Programmed Electrical Technologies (PET) has been a member of the Defence Industry Security Program for almost its entire existence and has a wealth of experience in the defence environment. PET was requested to team up with the DIPP to assist the program with security issues that may arise and to assist with ongoing management of the security side of the program.
Following consultations with Programmed Skilled Workforce operatives, the Chief Security Officer (CSO) within PET contacted the Defence Administrator, gaining full understanding of the requirements of the program. This enabled an all-encompassing strategy to be both developed and approved by Defence and Programmed Skilled Workforce. This strategy resulted in the Defence Administrator passing most responsibilities to the CSO.
Since the program’s commencement, the CSO has been active in providing security briefings and advice, arranging security clearances for eligible participants, creating and maintaining required security registers and providing ongoing assistance to participants. The CSO will also be responsible for enabling participants to obtain required access to defence establishments after due consultation with the Defence Administrator.
As participants progress through the program and more groups are recruited in the future, the CSO and Programmed Skilled Workforce’s involvement will continue.