Over 3,000 potential shipbuilders have signed up to the workforce register tied to the Naval Shipbuilding College program, according to program director Andrew Byrne.
The news comes shortly after the release of the 2020 Defence Strategic Update and 2020 Force Structure Plan, which will see an uptick in investment in the National Naval Shipbuilding Enterprise.
Between $168 billion and $185 billion has been earmarked for new builds and upgrades, which will carry through until the last of the Attack Class submarines comes together in the 2050s.
However, Byrne added that the planned expansions need to be paired with an appropriately skilled workforce, in order to "support the government’s ambition of creating a continuous naval shipbuilding industry".
With over 3,000 signing up to the register, Australians seem to be recognising naval shipbuilding as a growth industry during a time of economic uncertainty.
The Workforce Register enables Australians who are interested in long-term shipbuilding career opportunities to express their interest and receive assistance through the skilling and employment process, and to connect people with potential employers or education providers.
“The enterprise offers unique opportunities for people seeking a lasting career in the shipbuilding sector," added Byrne.
“If you are interested in a career in Australia’s naval shipbuilding industry, now is the time to connect with the college and join the workforce register."
The Naval Shipbuilding College was opened on Thursday, 1 November 2018 by then-minister for defence Christopher Pyne. The college is managed by the Naval Shipbuilding Institute, a joint venture between Kellogg Brown & Root and Huntington Ingalls Industries and is headquartered at the Osborne Naval Shipyard in South Australia.
The college operates a hub-and-spoke model that enables students to undertake courses through NSC-approved registered training organisations or higher education providers across Australia.