Blue Mountains students driving their way to an automotive career

TAFE NSW has launched its first automotive school-based program for year 10 and 11 students in the Blue Mountains, giving aspiring mechanics the opportunity to learn hands-on skills while they are still at school.

TAFE NSW Wentworth Falls recently welcomed students from Katoomba High School for the formal ribbon cutting to launch the program in November, where they were able to tour the hands-on automotive learning facilities.

The automotive program was developed by TAFE NSW in response to feedback from Blue Mountains high schools that there was a huge interest in the trade among students and many were looking to pursue a career in the automotive industry after high school.

Due to demand, TAFE NSW will deliver the program to a second class for students from Springwood and Winmalee high schools.

TAFE NSW automotive team leader Chris Roberts said the four-week program gives students an insight into the industry, which is facing a skills shortage.

"The program is designed to be a hands-on taster for students to experience what a career in the automotive industry and training at TAFE NSW looks like," he said.

"Students will learn how to check tyre pressure and dismantle car parts, as well as be introduced to safe workplace practices, which are great entry-level skills to pursue employment."

Katoomba High School transition adviser Thomas Daniels said students were excited to begin the course.

"Katoomba is neither city nor country, so students often have to travel long distances to pursue further study after school. The TAFE NSW program has been met with great interest from students because they can get ahead in their career while they are still at school," he said.