Australian submarine company ASC has agreed to a significant partnership with Tonsley Technical College that will provide employment pathways for school students into defence industries.

ASC has a skilled workforce of more than 1,900 employees and ongoing workforce demand.

As a key employer partner at the Tonsley Technical College, ASC will shape the learning experiences, support workplace learning and provide job opportunities through apprenticeships for students when they complete their programs.

This valuable employer partnership will also bolster the advanced manufacturing and engineering pathway being offered at the technical college, helping to ensure students are workplace ready when they complete their studies.

The partnership will provide a significant opportunity for school students to learn with a prestigious defence company in advanced manufacturing and engineering and ensure the graduates get a head start on their career in the defence industries.

The announcement of the partnership follows the agreement with BAE Systems as a key employer partner at the Findon Technical College, which is open for enrolments now, and will be the first of the five new technical colleges to open.

The Malinauskas Labor Government has committed $208 million to build the five technical colleges – three in metropolitan Adelaide and two in regional South Australia – to provide a specialist senior secondary option that equips students with the workplace skills needed in areas of high demand.

Technical colleges will provide an innovative partnership for defence employers to get the skilled workforce that they need by engaging early with school students. The partnership with ASC and other employer partners aligns with the key industry sectors that have workforce demand in South Australia.

Ongoing consultation and engagement with industry after the extensive engagement across the state in 2022 has driven the development of the programs at each of the five planned technical colleges.

Each technical college will support young people to make successful transitions from school to employment and further study in the key areas which are required by South Australian industry.

In the case of the Tonsley Techncial College, it will offer industry training programs in Advanced Manufacturing and Engineering; Automotive and Energy; Building and Construction; and Health and Social Support, which will include a pathway to allied health and nursing.

These specialisations will prepare students for the jobs available now and into the future, with a focus on new technologies and future industries.

The Technical College, which has officially partnered with Flinders University and the Australian Science and Mathematics School (ASMS), will be located at Bedford Park.

Quotes attributable to Peter Malinauskas

As each of these important technical colleges takes shape, we are creating carefully tailored links between education, business and industry to strengthen student pathways from school to employment.

We are equipping school students with workplace skills and providing a pipeline of workers in industry sectors where there is the highest demand for skills.

Kids who enrol in the Tonsley Technical College will be able to walk straight out of school into a fulfilling job at ASC.

South Australia is leading the country in this regard.

Quotes attributable to Susan Close

This is another exciting announcement for the future students at the Tonsley Technical College, and a great opportunity to prepare for the careers in defence industries.

The Tonsley Innovation Precinct, which sees the Tonsley Technical College being built in tandem with Flinders University’s Factory of the Future, will place South Australia at the global forefront of developing vibrant industry linked research, education and training facilities.

Quotes attributable to Blair Boyer

The commitment of ASC to Tonsley Technical College, is another important element to ensure that these specific industry pathways are aligned to the industry focus of the area.

There is a range of work we are undertaking to ensure we can meet the skills demand of these ambitious projects – and the technical colleges – play an innovative role in supporting our young people to gain exciting and long-term careers, right here in South Australia.

I know this collaboration with industry to deliver the skilled workers of the future will be vitally important for the state as a whole, socially and economically.

Quotes to come attributable to Managing Director and CEO of ASC, Stuart Whiley

Increased shipbuilding and submarine sustainment activities in South Australia in coming years will create unprecedented demand for skilled workers and it is important that we all work together – governments, industry, schools and higher education institutions – to develop the future workforce that we will need.

At ASC, we’re focused on sustaining and updating the Collins class submarines to ensure the Royal Australian Navy continues to operate a potent conventional submarine capability well into the 2030s. This important work requires a strong pipeline of qualified engineers, trades people and other skilled workers.

This partnership with the Tonsley Technical College, and its advanced manufacturing and engineering stream, will enhance our ongoing collaboration with the South Australian Government, industry and the education sector. This will enable us to collectively build the skilled shipbuilding workforce that South Australia will need to meet future defence requirements.

We look forward to welcoming Tonsley Technical College students into our apprentice, graduate, and early career programs in the years to come.

Published On: November 5th, 2023