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10 July, 2017 - Ministers announce capital funding to support Apprenticeship Programmes

€8 million to support delivery of apprenticeship programmes in institutes of technology

The Minister for Education and Skills, Richard Bruton TD, together with the Minister of State for Higher Education, Mary Mitchell O’Connor TD, and Minister of State for Training, Skills, Innovation and Research and Development, John Halligan TD today announced capital funding of just over €8million for 10 Institutes of Technology.

The funding will enable the institutions to purchase equipment and carry out enabling works for the implementation of new syllabi for four existing apprenticeships in Electrical, Heavy Vehicle Mechanics, Metal Fabrication and Plumbing. Funding is also being provided to purchase equipment and carry out enabling works for a new apprenticeship in Pipefitting in Cork Institute of Technology.

This funding is being provided by the Department of Education and Skills through the Higher Education Authority (HEA).

The recently published Action Plan to expand Apprenticeship and Traineeship in Ireland sets out how state agencies, education and training providers and employers will work together to deliver on the Action Plan for Education’s commitments on the expansion of apprenticeship and traineeship in the period to 2020.  

Announcing the funding, Minister Bruton said:

“I am delighted to announce this funding for equipment and enabling works in ten institutes of technology around the country. 

“This supports our objective to expand apprenticeships and traineeships in the period to 2020 and ensure they are an attractive path for people to take.   We plan to more than double the number of annual Apprenticeship and Traineeship registrations to 14,000 by 2020.

“Apprenticeships and traineeships give an exciting career path for many young people. As well as modernising existing apprenticeships we are also focused on supporting the development of new programmes.

“A key commitment set out in the plan for this year was the issuing of a second call for apprenticeship proposals to refresh the pipeline of proposals already established through the first call. The second call opened on 4th May and will remain open until 1st September. I urge employers to come forward with new apprenticeship proposals that can be developed to meet the skill needs in their sectors.”

Minister Mitchell O’Connor said:

“I’m delighted that nearly €8 million is being invested to support the modernisation of the syllabi for four very important apprenticeship programmes in higher education. 

“Institutes of Technology will be rolling out new syllabi in the 2017/18 academic year for Electrical, Heavy Vehicle Mechanics, Metal Fabrication and Plumbing.  

“It’s also great to see a new pipefitting apprenticeship being rolled out in Cork Institute of Technology.

“This will ensure that apprentices are gettingthe most up-to-date and industry relevant programmes available.

Minister Halligan highlighted the progress being made in rolling out new apprenticeships:

“Two new apprenticeship programmes were launched in 2016 - the Insurance Practitioner Apprenticeship in September and the Industrial Electrical Engineer Apprenticeship in November.  

“Three further new apprenticeships commenced last month, two in the medical devices area and a polymer processing apprenticeship.

“Another ten programmes are scheduled to get underway later this year in various sectors, such as financial services, accounting and hospitality.

“We also have six exciting new traineeships developed by SOLAS in areas such as engineering, hospitality and visual effects.

“It’s fantastic to see the development of the apprenticeship and traineeship career paths and the provision of opportunities for people to learn skills and get hands-on experience.”

Notes for Editors:

Apprenticeship

Apprenticeship is a programme of structured education and training which formally combines and alternates learning in the workplace with learning in an education and training centre. An apprenticeship prepares participants for a specific occupation and leads to a qualification on the National Framework of Qualifications. Since the 1970s it is estimated that over 105,000 apprentices have been trained in Ireland. In 2016 there were over 3,800 new apprenticeship registrations. There is a current population of 10,316 apprentices with 3,919 participating employers (December 2016).

Action Plan for Education Commitments

Building on the Programme for Government, the Action Plan for Education contains a commitment to enrol 31,000 people on apprenticeship programmes in the period 2016-2020 which represents a near doubling on current activity.  The achievement of these ambitious targets will require commitment from a number of stakeholders and strong employer demand. 

Action Plan to expand Apprenticeship and Traineeship 2016 - 2020

The Plan now sets out a clear pathway for developing new apprenticeships, a development timeline of 12-15 months, clear annual targets for apprenticeship registrations as well as targets for the development of new programmes.

Capital Funding Allocated for Institutes of Technology
InstituteElectricalHeavy Vehicle MechanicsPlumbingMetal FabricationPipefittingTotal by Institute
Athlone IoT €528,285€325,000  €853,285
Blanchardstown IoT  €93,000  €93,000
Carlow IoT€289,138    €289,138
Cork IoT€578,277 €325,000€663,068€315,470€1,881,815
Dublin IoT€578,277€528,285€93,000€663,068 €1,862,630
Dundalk IoT€578,277 €325,000  €903,277
Galway-Mayo IoT€289,138    €289,138
Limerick IoT€578,277    €578,277
IoT Sligo€578,277    €578,277
Waterford IoT€578,277 €93,000  €671,277
Total€4,047,938€1,056,570€1,254,000€1,326,137€315,470€8,000,115