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First Waikato Workforce Plan Calls For Dedicated Futures Academy

Business Waikato

The Waikato Regional Workforce Plan showcases and celebrates the agricultural, manufacturing and forestry powerhouses of the Waikato economy and calls for the establishment of a Waikato Futures Academy.

The Waikato Regional Skills Leadership Group (RSLG) is launched the plan on Wednesday night. 

“The plan takes a farm to port approach and the Waikato Futures Academy is seen as a platform to support communities to build skills that reflect current and future needs for the farming, horticulture and aquaculture sectors,” said Brendon Green, Co-chair of the Waikato RSLG. Establishment of the academy is one of multiple actions included in the plan.

RSLG Iwi Co-chair Keith Ikin said the plan sought ōritetanga or equity, particularly in making sure Waikato rangatahi succeeded in education and had decent and rewarding employment.

Another priority action is development of a pilot unique to Waikato, Tuakana-teina (The Wisdom Project), that would enable older and near-retirement workers to step back from the tools to coach rangatahi and new workers.

“Our younger workers will contribute by sharing their knowledge of digital/ICT skills with older workers. The pilot draws on our greatest asset, he tangata, our people,” Ikin said. It was supported by The Manufacturers’ Network, Waikato Engineering Careers Association and local government agencies.

A key area that was also highlighted was to augment and amplify current programs to support youth into education and career programs.

Climate change will also have a focus around supporting sectors in the transition to a low carbon economy.

The Waikato Regional Workforce Plan is available on the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment website here.

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