More than 200 building and construction students at Chisholm’s Institute of TAFE have been given a rare hands-on opportunity to restore an original heritage-listed railway shelter dating back to 1891, as part of the Andrews Labor Government’s Level Crossing Removal project.
Acting Premier James Merlino joined Minister for Training and Skills Gayle Tierney at Chisholm’s Dandenong campus today to meet students and teachers tackling the restoration, a partnership initiative between Chisholm and the Level Crossing Removals Authority.
The historic shelter – which features fine timber detailing – was part of Clayton’s old station, and was replaced last April by a new, modern station as part of the level crossing removal project. Chisholm students in apprenticeship and pre-apprentice programs are now working to make sure the building lives on as part of Clayton’s new station forecourt, providing an important link to the past.
The refurbishment is being undertaken under the expert guidance of a heritage advisor and a heritage architect and has been described by instructors as an ‘almost unheard of’ opportunity to hone traditional trade skills.
Five dangerous and congested level crossings have already been removed in Clayton and Noble Park as part of the Caulfield to Dandenong project, with four more soon to go. Around 200 apprentices, trainees and cadets are being employed as part of the Level Crossing Removal Project.
Meanwhile, the Labor Government is injecting more funds into TAFE and training to help build a highly skilled workforce ready to tackle the major projects of the future.
From 2019, the Labor Government’s Free TAFE For Priority Courses initiative will help remove the financial barrier for students looking to enter in-demand occupations such as building and construction.
Other funding initiatives will also go towards improving the quality of apprenticeship course materials and facilities – including a significant revamp of Chisholm’s Frankston Campus, supported by a $25 million boost from the Government’s TAFE rescue fund.
Quotes attributable to Acting Premier James Merlino
“Skills and trades training happening today are vital to making sure Victorians are ready to deliver the infrastructure projects we’ll need in the future.”
“With a $30 billion infrastructure pipeline we’re not only getting Victorians home safer and sooner, but also creating thousands of jobs and training opportunities.”
Quotes attributable to Minister for Training and Skills Gayle Tierney
“Through our Free TAFE initiative, we are making it easier for Victorians to get the in-demand skills and training that employers need.”
Quote attributable for Member for Clarinda Hong Lim
“It’s great to see so many students at work on restoring such a historic piece of Clayton’s infrastructure – and learning so many skills along the way.”
Reviewed 19 August 2020