Waihanga Ara Rau and ConCOVE Tūhura partnership will support a thriving construction and infrastructure workforce

Work to transform vocational education and training for the construction and infrastructure workforce has marked another milestone with the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between Waihanga Ara Rau Construction & Infrastructure Workforce Development Council and the Construction and Infrastructure Centre of Vocational Excellence (ConCOVE) Tūhura.

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Six Workforce Development Councils (WDCs) were set up under the Reform of Vocational Education (RoVE) to give industries greater leadership and influence across vocational education.

Waihanga Ara Rau has been established to develop and maintain a strategic view of the skills the construction and infrastructure industries require now and in the future, and has a key focus on giving a stronger voice to Māori enterprise and iwi businesses. This work will ensure learners and communities can fulfil their potential and employers have the right people, with the right skills, at the right time.  

ConCOVE Tūhura’s mission is to connect and align industry, learners and vocational education to re-imagine clear, equitable and supported career pathways within the construction and infrastructure sector.

From industry advocacy to working together on advisory groups, ConCOVE Tūhura and Waihanga Ara Rau’s jointly agreed activities, formalised by their MoU, will draw on each party’s respective strengths to promote a collaborative and cooperative working relationship.

Mutual goals include educating industry and the wider sector about emerging trends and insights, shared engagement activities, sharing data and insights, and partnering on mutually beneficial projects.

Waihanga Ara Rau Chief Executive Philip Aldridge says: “Partnership and collaboration are part of Waihanga Ara Rau’s DNA. We are working closely with strategic partners like ConCOVE Tūhura to achieve the intent of the reform. All parts of the system need to be complementary, not competitive, for the changes to be successful. This MoU shows our commitment to a partnership that has the construction and infrastructure industries’ needs front and centre - we look forward to the positive benefits our collaboration will create.”

ConCOVE Tūhura Director (Acting) Pip Schollum-Manase says: “ConCOVE Tūhura, like the WDCs, is industry led and Government enabled. Construction and infrastructure industry voices are informing our understanding of the issues affecting their workforces and we will use this collective knowledge, as well as data from other research, to build vocational education tools and solutions to improve outcomes for employers, workers and learners. In particular, we’ll be looking at vocational education solutions in areas of productivity, disruption, diversity and sustainability with a focus on the three priority groups of Maori, Pasifika and wāhine. 

“We’re looking forward to collaborating with Waihanga Ara Rau And recognise that working together will provide the greatest benefit for industry and learners.”