WelTec students building skills, homes and futures

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Four Whanganui families will soon get the keys to new homes in Harper Street and Puriri Street that were built for them by Wellington Institute of Technology (WelTec) students preparing for jobs in the construction industry.

The four homes were built on campus in Porirua and Petone by students completing the New Zealand Certificate in Construction Trade Skills (Level 3).  
Head of ​the WelTec School of Construction and Engineering ​Neil McDonald says the purpose of the qualification is to provide the construction sector with work-ready people with transferable skills and the knowledge to enter the industry as apprentices. 

Up to 20 ākonga (students) worked on each home for four days a week, for about 30 weeks. They were responsible for building all aspects of the homes, from the floor and wall framing to erecting the roof trusses and installing the insulation and plasterboard linings.  
The light timber-frame homes were then transported to Whanganui where they are now ready for families to move into. 
Kāinga Ora Regional Director for Taranaki, Whanganui and Manawatū, Graeme Broderick, says it is rewarding to see the hard work of so many students reach this milestone. 
“We believe these homes are a win-win for everyone. Families in need get a well-built home, communities get an increase in the number of qualified tradespeople, and students get real-world skills building an actual house under supervision.” 
“The relationship Kāinga Ora has with the ​Institutes of Technology and Polytechnics ​provide students with a career pathway and a sense of optimism. These students are leaving a lasting legacy by delivering quality homes where there is a need,” says Broderick. 
Neil McDonald agrees there are many benefits to this relationship. 
“Ākonga realise the value and purpose of the trade skills they are learning and putting into practice on a real commercial building project. They also develop a sense of responsibility and pride for helping to provide warm, safe, dry, quiet, modern homes for families to live in.” 
“Building a home from scratch that is guaranteed to last for probably their whole lifetime is a tangible thing they can be proud of for years to come.”

This article was first published by Kāinga Ora - Homes and Communities. View the original article here

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