Port college adds new workshop

Birkenhead's Maritime & Engineering College North West, which supports a key industrial sector in the area, has unveiled new £60,000 electrical training facilities aimed at firms employing electrical engineers.

MECNW is now actively seeking to recruit learners from local firms on its NVQ level three apprenticeship programmes which are unique in offering an electrical specialism for heavy industry.

Terry Weston, MECNW skills director, said: "The new electrical workshop is a fantastic addition to MECNW.

"Most electrical college courses focus on domestic and commercial areas, but as well as covering these areas we also offer training in electrical engineering for heavy industry. The new workshop features wiring bays, panel building sections, heavy industry containment training areas, three-phase mains distribution areas, fault finding sections and motor control and programmable logic controller training."

Peel Ports, which has already placed six electrical apprentices with MECNW, also donated electrical equipment specific to dockside carriers and cranes in order to hone the experience of its apprentices.

"The courses we offer are all flexible, City & Guilds accredited and designed to allow input from the employer," said Weston. "Apprenticeships are ultimately designed to provide an employer with skills, so encouraging their input ensures the apprentice has real world experience for the specific end workplace."

Jim Teasdale, Mersey Maritime group chief executive, oversees the running of MECNW, a subsidiary of Mersey Maritime. He said: "We have courses and facilities available to firms of all sizes operating in the engineering and maritime sectors. We know employers in industrial sectors need to upskill their workforce both to remain competitive and in order to seize future opportunities. Huge investment is expected in the region with Peel's Liverpool 2 development, the growth of Cammell Laird and major developments such as the Mersey Gateway bridge. A recent Ofsted inspection judged MECNW's work with employers and learners as outstanding and praised our outstanding success rates for advanced apprentices. Employers can therefore be sure that they're getting the best training programmes available."

  • Dave Pendleton, director of Mersey Maritime, has left after nine years to join SeaTechnik, based in North Wales, a specialist in safety systems and ship performance.

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