First national apprentices graduate with BSc in Polymer Processing Technology
Polymer Technology Ireland, the Ibec group that represents the polymer technology sector in Ireland, today announced the first graduates of the Bachelor of Science in Polymer Processing Technology Apprenticeship. The new apprenticeship was designed by the group to meet the demand for talent in this growing industry that employs 7,000 people across Ireland with major hubs in Athlone, Limerick, Galway, Sligo, Dublin, Cork and Waterford.
Ibec Polymer Apprenticeship manager Trish Breen said: “Ireland is home to a dynamic polymer technology industry spanning 230 companies with an annual turnover of €2.1 billion annually. This first of its kind three-year apprenticeship programme has equipped apprentices with world-class education in polymer processing, good manufacturing practice and automation, and offered them the opportunity to gain hands-on experience working in leading businesses.
“We welcome the Programme for Government setting out their commitment to an Apprenticeship Action Plan to look at new ways of structuring, funding and promoting apprenticeships. Apprenticeships need to be a much larger part of the education landscape in Ireland. In the face of economic challenges, it’s vital that the Government ensures the sustainability of the new apprenticeship programmes which offers an alternative career routes for young people. But to do this we need to the right funding model that makes it easier for SMEs to take on apprentices.”
SOLAS Executive Director Dr Mary-Liz Trant said: “I would like to congratulate these 12 graduates who are doing their bit to sweep away the dark clouds of Covid-19. Their achievement along with the participating businesses is a fantastic showcase of Generation Apprenticeship and what happens when Government, industry and education work symbiotically. This is how, together, we generate personal and business value.”
AIT Dean of Faculty of Engineering & Informatics, Dr Sean Lyons said: “AIT is committed to providing learners with the right skills for career success. We are proud to see the first graduates completing their apprenticeship, equipped with a fantastic mix of applied learning as well as the input of our lecturers. This apprenticeship program will offer graduates a rewarding career in the polymer sector and would not be possible without the support we receive from Ibec and industry partners.”