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File image of an apprentice in metal fabrication Alamy Stock Photo
Apprenticeships

Funding of €17 million announced to expand apprenticeships across higher education sector

It will deliver an additional 132 apprenticeship craft training blocks.

FUNDING OF €17 million has been announced to expand apprenticeships across the higher education sector.

The funding will be used across four Technological Universities and one Institute of Technology in the higher education sector to deliver an additional 132 apprenticeship craft training blocks.   

The four Technological Universities to benefit are the Atlantic Technological University (ATU), the Technological University of the Shannon (TUS), Munster Technological University (MTU), and the South East Technological University (SETU).

Dundalk Institute of Technology (DkIT) is the Institute of Technology set to benefit.

This will support the expansion of registrations across crafts including electrical, electronic security systems, pipefitting, plumbing, metal fabrication and refrigeration and air conditioning.

The funding has been announced by Further and Higher Education Minister Simon Harris and Minister of State for Skills and Further Education Niall Collins to “respond to the growing demand for apprenticeships in the higher education sector”.  

This additional capacity is also required to meet the increase in apprentice registrations as indicated by SOLAS in a number of trades.  

Speaking today, Minister Harris said: “This investment reaffirms once again the Government’s strong commitment to enhancing and expanding the apprenticeship system, putting apprenticeships at the centre of the education and training system by building on previous apprenticeship programme funding.”

Harris added that today’s funding announced is “also critical to the Government meeting our housing targets”.  

Also included in the investment is an allocation of €220,000 so that SETU’s Carlow campus can procure all the equipment required for the delivery of its Aviation programme.   

Minister of State Niall Collins said the Government “has been relentless in promoting apprenticeships” and noted that in order to meet demand, “we must continuously invest in infrastructure”.

He added: “I am really pleased to see this investment being made across our TUs. It will help us grow our infrastructure and meet the demands of our growing apprenticeship population.” 

Ciarán McCaffrey is the head of Capital Programmes in the Higher Education Authority and he said “investment is key to facilitating a strong pipeline in crucial skills areas through the expansion of craft apprenticeships”.

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