National contracting agency OPEC Systems has announced the launch of an education initiative that will provide serving and ex-defence personnel with quality training opportunities, as well as courses that build on recognised prior learning.
The Brisbane-based firm provides site remediation, disaster response, and commission and supply of specialist equipment across a range of sectors. Within its specialised Defence portfolio, the company provides mobile hospitals, monitoring systems, and remediation of sites contaminated with un-exploded ordnance (UXO).
With the unveiling of OPEC College, the company builds on a long-held status as an accredited Registered Training Organisation (RTO), offering qualifications from Cert III to Graduate Diploma across eight distinct faculties:
- Leadership and Management
- Work Health and Safety
- Project Management
- Risk Management and Auditing
- Marine Oil Spill
OPEC College general manager David Kirkby spent 20 years in the Australian Army as Combat Engineer, Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) Manager and as a Warrant Officer Class 2, working at the School of Military Engineering as the Wing Sergeant Major.
“We are delighted to launch OPEC College. It’s been in the works for some time, but we have a lot of skill in the training arena and have identified that there is an opening in the market for quality training with a recognition of prior learning component,” said Kirkby.
“OPEC Systems already works closely with industry through our company’s defence, enviro, energy, marine and health divisions. Extending our services to the education sector means we can combine our expertise in training with our company’s deep integration within industry, delivering commercially focused training and valuable qualifications for future-proof employment,” he said.
“Defence is heartland territory for us. In addition to working closely with Defence through our UXO and CBRN programs, a number of our team are ex-services, and we implicitly understand the Defence environment and their training needs,” he said.
An important facet of the service is recognition of prior learning (RPL), where trained assessors carefully examine a candidate’s skills and knowledge acquired through their career to determine if this can be translated into a relevant qualification. Where there are gaps, OPEC College offers training.
“We’re a little different at OPEC College in that we offer both RPL and training opportunities, as well as continuous enrolment, meaning that you can enrol at any time, and take as long as you need. This flexibility can be an attractive option for people who want to fast-track their qualifications, and equally attractive for people who like to take their time or study in bursts.”