Carpenters and bricklayers are now in such hot demand for the west's booming construction industry that students are nearly guaranteed a job once they complete their apprenticeship.
Victoria University carpentry teacher Ross Firth said some of the world's oldest trades are now facing a critical shortage of newcomers which will only get worse as the average age of bricklayers and carpenters continues to increase.
With some 30,000 new houses planned for the booming Melton and Wyndham areas over the next few years, students from Victoria University's 17-week pre-apprenticeship programs in Melton are quickly snapped up.
"We have a backlog of residential builders wanting to employ students, but most want them to have their pre-app before they will take them on," he says.
After their pre-apprenticeship, students work as an apprentice with an employer for a further three and a half years before they are fully qualified as a carpenter or bricklayer.
"Melton and Wyndham are in the middle of a housing boom and registered builders can earn very good salaries because they can have a few houses on the go at once," he said.
Pre-requisites for the program are a minimum age of 15, a love of the outdoors and team work, and a good understanding of maths and English.
For more information about VU's Melton's pre-apprenticeships in bricklaying or carpentry, call 9919-7530.
Ann Marie Angebrandt, Media Officer,
Marketing & Communications Department, Victoria University
Ph: (03) 9919 5487; mobile: 0403 556 001.