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VTC and Hong Kong International Aviation Academy Sign MoU to Roll Out VTC Earn & Learn Scheme for Aviation Industry
Jun 2018

The robust growth of the international aviation industry has boosted the demand for talent for the aviation industry. The Vocational Training Council (VTC) and the Hong Kong International Aviation Academy (the Academy) of the Airport Authority Hong Kong (AA) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on 25 June to launch the VTC Earn & Learn Scheme for the Aviation Industry with a view to strengthening the training of local manpower for this important sector.

Officiating at the MoU Signing Ceremony, the guest of honour, Under Secretary for Transport and Housing Dr Raymond SO said, “Quality manpower is the pre-requisite of the sustainable development of the aviation industry. Of particular importance is the supply of young people equipped with knowledge and skills as well as practical working experience. I look forward to the roll-out of the Diploma of Foundation Studies (Aviation) as part of the VTC Earn & Learn Scheme for the Aviation Industry in September 2018.” Dr SO also called for the active participation of the industry to help nurture the young generation who aspire to work in the aviation industry.

AA Chief Executive Officer Fred LAM said, “Through our collaboration with VTC, we aim to help young people obtain professional knowledge and techniques while earning a stable income. The Academy will actively encourage business partners at the airport to participate in the Scheme. Together, we can help young people understand more about the promising career prospects in the aviation industry.”

The VTC has long been committed to nurturing talent for the local aviation sector and many VTC graduates have entered the industry, contributing greatly to the workplace. VTC Chairman Dr Roy CHUNG said, “Under tripartite collaboration of the VTC, the Government and industry, the VTC Earn & Learn Scheme integrating classroom learning and on-the-job training has been rolled out to provide new blood for various industries. Thanks to the support and participation of a number of industries, over 3,500 youths have benefitted from the Scheme since inception.” Dr CHUNG believed the VTC Earn & Learn Scheme for the Aviation Industry will equip apprentices with the requisite knowledge and know-how to contribute to the long-term growth of the sector.

Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA) currently has over 73,000 staff. With the continuous increase in passenger and cargo traffic and a number of ongoing expansion projects at HKIA, there is a strong demand for talent in different fields of the aviation industry, such as maintenance, cargo logistics, and ground handling services. It is expected that after the completion of the Three-runway System, the aviation industry can provide over 120,000 direct jobs by the year 2030.

The VTC Earn & Learn Scheme for the Aviation Industry welcomes applications from Secondary 6 graduates. The apprentices will first be hired by an industry employer, then receive on-the-job training while at the same time as studying the part-time Diploma of Foundation Studies (Aviation) (DFS-Aviation) at the Hong Kong Institute of Vocational Education (IVE), a VTC member institution. Total duration of the training will be two years. The apprentices will spend 1 to 1.5 days per week attending classes at the IVE, while receiving on-the-job training with their employer to acquire practical experience.

The curriculum of DFS-Aviation covers professional areas such as introductions to aviation, air cargo handling and technology; airport/airline management structure; and ground service equipment handling and technology. Tuition fees will be fully funded by the employers, enabling apprentices to enjoy a stable salary while being entitled to subsidies and allowances.

Under the MoU, the VTC will work with the Academy on recruitment of apprentices, providing professional training, and promoting the Scheme to the industry. The two parties are committed to training quality professionals to further the long-term development of the local aviation industry and raise its professionalism.

Upon completion of the VTC Earn & Learn Scheme for the Aviation Industry, apprentices can enter the industry and work in various positions, such as Cargo Officer, Passenger Officer and Ramp Control Officer in airlines and companies specialising in ground operations and air transport. Graduate apprentices can also choose to proceed to a higher diploma programme to obtain higher qualifications, including Higher Diplomas in Aviation and Aircraft Maintenance Engineering offered by the IVE Engineering Discipline. Graduates of these programmes can further scale the progression ladder and go on to pursue top-up degree programmes in aviation.

The VTC has already been collaborating with the Academy since April 2017 to provide aviation-related training modules and jointly offering part-time professional diploma programmes in aviation operations and management.

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