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Guest Gollywobbler

Prospective Trades Skills Students in Oz - Be Wary

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Guest Gollywobbler

Hi All

 

I think that anybody who is contemplating going to Australia to study for a trades skill should tread very carefully. Some of the details of the new regime for training foreign tradies in Australia have now been published but not all of them. It is not clear whether there will be a change to the current requirement for 2 years at college in Australia.

 

TRA have now released the details of the new JobReady testing programme for tradies who have learned their skills in Australia and the new JobReady rules come into effect on 1st January 2010. The JobReady thing comprises four separate elements before the tradie can apply for an onshore GSM visa. The potential cost of the four stages could be as high as $4,550 in some cases:

 

Job Ready - Overview

 

After leaving college, the newly trained tradies will also have to gain not less than 12 months of recent, relevant work experience before they can complete the remaining stages of the JobReady test and apply for a GSM visa. If they decide to stay in Australia in order to get the work experience, they will be forced to obtain a temporary subclass 485 visa for the purpose:

 

http://www.immi.gov.au/skilled/general-skilled-migration/485/

 

Before they can get a sc 485 visa, though, these tradies will have to pass the first of the four stages of the JobReady assessment:

 

Job Ready - Provisional Skills Assessment

 

Part of obtaining this preliminary JobReady assessment involves satisfying a criterion which I do not understand. The TRA website says that one of the things the applicant must provide is:

 

Statement from your employer about your work experience in Australia over at least 6 months. The statement must detail the occupation in which you were employed; exact periods of employment; and a description of the nature and content of your work along with the machines, tools and equipment used.

 

Is there any hard evidence to prove that 100% of trades skills trainees are able to fill their part time work abilities (which are optional as far as their student visas are concerned) doing work which is relevant to the trade skill in which they are being trained? What evidence is there that the Government intends to ensure that relevant, paid work experience will be available for all of the overseas students who want it?

 

No doubt the whole thing will become clearer once the migration agents who specialise in advising overseas students have had a chance to get their teeth into the new arrangements. However my feeling is that prospective trades skills students need to tread very, very carefully and should obtain specialist, detailed, competent advice about exactly how the whole thing will work before handing a single cent to a college in Australia, frankly.

 

Cheers

 

Gill

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This is the straight kick in to International students stomach, this requirements are virtually impossible to fulfill and that's why they have made it like this, I would love to see now how these all trades colleges survive without students

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Guest Cimbom

I agree Kay. Sounds like a lot of protectionism to me. I don't get the work experience requirement at all. Especially for trades such as engineering technicians and the like. How can you possibly get work experience in an area like that without being qualified?

 

Such a shame too. I think international students contribute a lot to the country.

 

It's great that you posted this Gill.

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Does this system treat overseas trades students as different from onshore ones as far as the tuition is concerned? According to the OH his training in the automotive industry was that he was effectively employed full time and he attended trade school for 1 week in every 4 for the first year, rising to 2 weeks in every 6, therefore you get the work experience as part of the apprenticeship in the first place.

 

The apprenticeship agencies such as MRAEL seem to do the the same thing in terms of they source host companies to provide the on-job experience while they sort out the tuition side of things at trade school.

 

If that's how they're aiming it, it doesn't seem to be a problem to me, but if they're expecting an overseas person to do full-time tuition and then source all their own experience it's going to be a lot harder.

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Guest jsmithjsmith

Hi,

 

I wonder if you know if this would this apply to my best mate? He originally came out to oz on a student visa but the his company took him on a 457 as soon as he was qualified, he was just working on his tra application and as soon as he gets a positive from tra his work were going to sponser him on rsms. Will he still be able to or will he have to take this costly job ready test? he is really worrying now.

 

Thanks

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I agree Kay. Sounds like a lot of protectionism to me.

 

<snip>

 

Such a shame too. I think international students contribute a lot to the country.

 

It's great that you posted this Gill.

 

 

Remember that one person's protectionism is another person's patriotism - looking after the interests of Australian citizens first, and all that.

 

With a Federal election scheduled for 2010 which sentiment do you think is likely to be higher up the Minister's list of priorities? I can almost hear the start of media criticism of the Minister, and his "looking after the needs of Australians" retort.

 

Personally, I think the skilled migration program has become far too influenced by the onshore student caseload over the last few years, and as such steps are needed to free up places for offshore applicants who already have skilled work experience, who are (I submit) likely to be more gainfully employed upon the commencement of employment in Australia.

 

Best wishes to all for a successful 2010.


Managing Director, Go Matilda Visas - www.gomatilda.com

Registered Migration Agent Number 0102534; Registered Tax Agent (Australia)

Chartered Accountant (UK, and Australia)

T - 023 81 66 11 55 (UK) or 03 9935 2929 (Australia)

E - alan.collett@gomatilda.com and acollett@bdhtax.com

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PS. I am also aware of the old adage, "Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel".


Managing Director, Go Matilda Visas - www.gomatilda.com

Registered Migration Agent Number 0102534; Registered Tax Agent (Australia)

Chartered Accountant (UK, and Australia)

T - 023 81 66 11 55 (UK) or 03 9935 2929 (Australia)

E - alan.collett@gomatilda.com and acollett@bdhtax.com

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Guest Cimbom

I agree with you Alan. The interests of Australian workers should be looked after but I think this would be better done by removing professions such as marketing, TV journalism, fashion design and the like (in which local students have a lot of trouble finding jobs) from non employer-sponsored GSM eligibility before they worry about trades which are genuinely in short supply. Just my 2 cents

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The 6 months work will actually leave most of the students on my course better off. There were only I think 4/5 out of about 15 of us who would have had 900 hours of work experiance by the end of our visas (which is what WAS needed). Under that system, most of them would have had to go to their own countries for the work experiance, or signed up for another course, as they could not get the 18 month visa without already having the 900 hours.

The government has no responsibility to help people find jobs, we all knew that before starting our courses.

 

The TRA website says that most likely IS the cost of the whole process. Unless they suddenly work out how stupid it is, it has jumped from $300 this week to $4550!!!

 

I count myself extremly lucky that my employer will probably give me a contract (although I have to ask yet). Of course, trying to convince them to register with TRA and have them turning up at least twice and looking around the company might be harder.

 

What also really p's me off is the part of the price for the Australian work place culture and language course! Why are they insisting people have IELTS tests, and then that too??? Surely people learn enough from the 6 months they must already have worked, and from their two year course!

 

I am SO disgusted by this, I was one week off, and the price has gone up over 15 times the origional one! I knew I would end up having to work an extra year most likely, but never in my wildest dreams did I think the cost would go up so much, and they would want employers to jump through so many hoops! I think this will make it VERY hard for most students.


Has two beautiful Aussie little girls :-)

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Guest Cimbom

So sorry to hear that Blossom. What are you studying? Hopefully you're able to get through all the requirements and get PR.

 

These are some really drastic changes. A friend of my partner was considering enrolling into a trade TAFE qualification as he just finished his VCE but now after these changes, is thinking how to save enough money to go down the uni route instead.

 

Seems like this was done to milk as much money as possible from dedicated international students. I think they're hoping they'll get scared off by all these requirements and go to uni instead, which is a lot more expensive. Even the most cheapest 3-year uni degree is around $55,000, never mind ones which are longer or more competitive/desirable. The ones that stick to TAFE will have to fork out money for all these fancy tests and assessments.

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Guest Gollywobbler
Hi,

 

I wonder if you know if this would this apply to my best mate? He originally came out to oz on a student visa but the his company took him on a 457 as soon as he was qualified, he was just working on his tra application and as soon as he gets a positive from tra his work were going to sponser him on rsms. Will he still be able to or will he have to take this costly job ready test? he is really worrying now.

 

Thanks

 

Hi jsmithjsmith

 

Good question. The TRA website talks about "permanent residency." The DIAC website confines the JobReady testing to applicants for onshore GSM visas only. Please compare:

 

Job Ready - Overview

 

What's New? Recent Changes in General Skilled Migration

 

In your friend's shoes, I would phone Peter Speldewinde of DIAC and ask him how the system is supposed to work after 1st January 2010. I would NOT e-mail him because if you e-mail him, one of his junior minions will send a lengthy standard reply that fails to answer any of the questions you have asked.

 

Peter Speldewinde is supposed to be DIAC's in-house Labour Market expert, so presumably he knows exactly how the JobReady thing is supposed to work and exactly whom it is intended to affect (except that my bet is that he has been so busy with the broad brush that he has overlooked at least 100 scenarios in which nobody knows what the new rules are intended to be because they have not worked all the scenarios out and therefore do not have policies to cover 99% of them as yet.)

 

Directory.gov.au

 

I would ring the man's direct dial number just before 9am and I would then persist, brooking no arguments, until the man himself comes to the phone.

 

Cheers

 

Gill

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Guest Gollywobbler

Hi All

 

Has anybody noticed TRA setting up branch offices all over Australia and recruiting workplace inspectors to man them? Without that, how are TRA's staff going to undertake monitoring visits to hundreds if not thousands of Aussie employers?

 

Where is the list of approved RTOs who will do the workplace based assessments of the candidates? It would take many months to get binding contracts into place with all of the RTOs who will wish to jump aboard this new gravy train.

 

The good news is that TRA will need hundreds of new staff - Monitoring Visitors, Managers and ordinary admin support staff - located in the several new regional bases that TRA will also require. With a bit of luck, the Aussie Citizens and Permanent Residents who will find themselves in the dole queue when the private VET colleges close down will be able to secure new and rewarding careers as TRA hacks instead - at a time when Government claims to be committed to reducing public sector spending. JobReady will not be cheap to administer, it will be hugely labour intensive for TRA and at present TRA don't have anything like the number of staff needed to do it.

 

I'm not clever enough or knowlegeable enough to be able to spot the ways in which it will be possible to scam the JobReady scheme but I'll bet that the scheme contains more holes than a colander. Doubtless the same production team that brought us bogus work experience documents will be all systems go on a new production pretty soon.

 

Cheers

 

Gill

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Guest Jamie Smith

 

I would ring the man's direct dial number just before 9am and I would then persist, brooking no arguments, until the man himself comes to the phone.

 

Cheers

 

Gill

 

Steady Gill, DIAC might make sure you get detained at the airport when you next visit your Mum and returned to the UK....

 

Word has it that the onshore students will have a tougher time than offshore applicants. As Alan says, what's good for one is not good for another.

 

This is all a result of four things -

 

 

  1. DIAC linking student study to PR,

  2. DEEWR failing to supervise delegated States that let shonky colleges deliver substandard courses for too long,

  3. students rorting the system and buying fake work experience (remember the closure of pathway D?), and

  4. both the current and previous Minister failing to act when DIAC first advised the Minister(s) that trends in student numbers showed they would distort the balance of applicants in the system.

 

All are failures of Government, not the applicants themselves (other than a few scumbags with student visas who manipulated the weaknesses in the policy settings and the operators of the slack colleges).

 

As the common voice says the student study system badly needed cleaning up:emoticon_doctor_sna, all we can do is look to the new system, and get proper advice from agents who have been personally briefed by DIAC/TRA.

 

Make this one of your agent interview questions "when did you get a direct briefing from DIAC/TRA on how the new system would operate and what was now needed to make a successful applciation?":happy_face_cowboy_w

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Guest Gollywobbler

Hi Jamie

 

I don't pretend to know anything real about the international education scene in Australia or the intricacies of the various visas involved. For this reason, I stressed to David Wilden that since we did not have an RMA coming with us I felt it would be better to avoid trying to tackle the issues which arise solely in Australia because that is where the international students are.

 

I agree with you about your numbered points 1 to 4 above. However it does seem to me that the Government has become so obsessed with trying to make their new JobReady scheme watertight (when reality is that cleverer coves than me will work out ways to scam it, for sure) that they have lost sight of what is commercially and practicably do-able and what a realistic price for it ought to be.

 

When are DIAC and TRA going to be holding joint seminars for RMAs and where will these seminars be held?

 

For example, the answer to the question which jsmithjsmith asked earlier does not leap off the page because although the DIAC website - so far - only mentions the JobReady scheme in the context of onshore GSM visas, the TRA website leaves the door open to include onshore ENS and RSMS visas as well if the Govt so desires - or if the Govt decides that it wants to include these at a later date. I'll bet that Peter Speldewinde would not be able to answer a direct question about this, addressed to him on behalf of jsmithjsmith's friend, because I suspect it is yet another scheme that has been lashed together at the last minute using bits of old rope rather than working it out fully and properly in advance so as to come up with a coherent, watertight repair for the original problems. I think it is what Mark Webster would call another "band aid solution."

 

I think that the supply of fresh wannabe trades skills international students is likely to dry up. If the market votes with its feet then several RMAs will be out of a job, not just out of a seminar.

 

Cheers

 

Gill

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Guest Jamie Smith
Hi Jamie

 

However it does seem to me that the Government has become so obsessed with trying to make their new JobReady scheme watertight (when reality is that cleverer coves than me will work out ways to scam it, for sure) that they have lost sight of what is commercially and practicably do-able and what a realistic price for it ought to be.

 

Agree totally.

 

When are DIAC and TRA going to be holding joint seminars for RMAs and where will these seminars be held?
They'll have a programme organised I'm sure. It's typical of Government to launch policy and then talk to those affected (this is Government version of "dialogue" when it's actually monologue), then at the seminars the loopholes and inconsistencies are pointed out only to be denied on the day. Months later it becomes evident that there IS a problem and Government then moves to adjust it - more bandaids.

 

I think the job ready test is to be a tightly controlled and a tightly applied measure to catch the rorters, misrepresenters and shortcut takers.

 

DIAC and TRA have a bob each way on this, they can trumpet their success with high failure rates in the tests, and if the miscreants just won't sit the tests then the visa application numbers will be lower too. There will be a lot of back patting going on, methinks....

 

Why DIAC and TRA don't have the courage to discuss proposed policy with stakeholders is beyond me, the only thing I can think of is they are afraid the brains outside the fortress are better than the brains inside.

 

For example, the answer to the question which jsmithjsmith asked earlier does not leap off the page because although the DIAC website - so far - only mentions the JobReady scheme in the context of onshore GSM visas, the TRA website leaves the door open to include onshore ENS and RSMS visas as well if the Govt so desires - or if the Govt decides that it wants to include these at a later date.
Yes, JRT is a strategic bandaid. But it's still a bandaid.

 

I think that the supply of fresh wannabe trades skills international students is likely to dry up. If the market votes with its feet then several RMAs will be out of a job, not just out of a seminar.
Quite likely.

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Hi Jamie.

 

I'd hazard a guess the reason why DIAC doesn't discuss its intentions with stakeholders is because some (many?) stakeholders are mightily aggrieved at what is being proposed (and, I suspect, at what is yet to come).

 

Indeed, with demand for visas significantly exceeding what is acceptable politically I can understand why DIAC takes the approach of handing down pronouncements in the way it does, akin to a divide and rule approach.

 

Where I take issue is the retrospective nature of many of these changes - which is indicative of a failure to plan. Someone somewhere in DIAC needs a good business plan written for them, don't you think ...? :yes:

 

Best wishes for a successful 2010.


Managing Director, Go Matilda Visas - www.gomatilda.com

Registered Migration Agent Number 0102534; Registered Tax Agent (Australia)

Chartered Accountant (UK, and Australia)

T - 023 81 66 11 55 (UK) or 03 9935 2929 (Australia)

E - alan.collett@gomatilda.com and acollett@bdhtax.com

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Guest Gollywobbler

Hi Alan, Hi Jamie

 

Alan is absolutely right. Peter Mares tackled the Minister about his practice of springing unwelcome surprises on people. The Minister retorted that when they announced the last skilled visa shakeup in advance in 2007, DIAC received thousands of visa applications during the final week before the switch to the new system.

 

Migration agents and their clients are not stupid. Both will make hay whilst the sun shines. I would imagine that many migration agents have had to scrap their own plans for a festive break this year in order to sit at their desks preparing visa applications for submission by no later than 31st December.

 

I assume that TRA didn't actually publish details of the JobReady scheme on Christmas Day, surely? I assume that they published the information during the morning on Christmas Eve, shortly before they closed their office at midday and will not reopen till January 4th. A couple of days earlier they told someone either on here or on BE that they couldn't release details of the JobReady scheme until they got the green light from the Minister.

 

DIAC are splitting hairs about whether an innovation that takes immediate effect also has a retrospective effect. They insist that it doesn't because they say they have made no changes to the Migration Act and therefore they have made no retroactively operating changes to the law. They regard changing the Migration Regulations as not being the same thing. Clutching at such a flimsy straw might have appealed to the survivors in the immediate aftermath of the sinking of the Titanic as well but that is the Official Script about this and DIAC are determined to stick to it.

 

jsmithjsmith has already highlighted one practical uncertainty about the exact scope of JobReady. There are more, equally valid, questions on the BE thread too (BE's members are much more clued up about this than we are on here.) I would think that RMAs such as Glenn Pereira can think of a hundred other examples where because the scope of the intention is not clear, reliable answers are also impossible.

 

Job Ready Test Info : British Expat Discussion Forum

 

After an innocuous start by George Lombard, the BE thread is going like a train. I don't want PiO even to try to compete with it because we don't have the expertise on here to do so unless Glenn decides to get involved with this thread, methinks.

 

Somebody famous remarked once that a camel is a horse designed by a committee. This JobReady thing resembles a camel to me. I think it is much too complicated and much too expensive to be worthwhile in the end and I would lay money on the notion that it is not scam-proof.

 

Cheers

 

Gill

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Guest Cimbom

Hi Gill,

 

Do you know if any of these changes, or any others, are likely to have any impact on engineering students who intend to apply for PR in the next few years?

 

Thanks :)

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Guest Gollywobbler
Hi Gill,

 

Do you know if any of these changes, or any others, are likely to have any impact on engineering students who intend to apply for PR in the next few years?

 

Thanks :)

 

 

Hi Cimbom

 

I don't have any specific information apart from what we can all read on the DIAC and TRA websites and on the internet forums.

 

I think there is a need to define "engineering." Some engineers get into the field via doing degrees in engineering. Others go in via the "engineering trades." They are nearly all men and since I'm a woman I have no real understanding of what any of these guys actually do.

 

George Lombard has provided the list of the occupations which are definitely caught by the new JobReady arrangements:

 

http://www.pomsinoz.com/forum/migration-issues/74783-occupations-requiring-recent-work-experience.html

 

As far as I can gather, JobReady is not intended to affect or involve occupations where the pre application skills assessment has to be done by Engineers Australia.

 

So far so good but I would not put it past Senator Evans to impose something similar on Engineers Australia in the fullness of time.

 

Personally I think the most rational solution would be a different political party in Government (which also goes for the UK in my view.)

 

Cheers

 

Gill

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Guest Cimbom

Thanks. It is a worst case scenario anyway, as we will most likely be applying for a spouse visa. My partner is doing a degree in electrical engineering.

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The whole system has been influenced by skewed "debate" in the media. An example of this has been how one "notorious" demographer (I will not name to protect PomsinOz) known in some circles as 'christian name "I am not a racist but..." family name' whose personal prejudices have been taken as well researched academic study..... but common theme is racism toward Asians especially.... uncle in NE Victoria mentioned same guy (he knows family) as a "white australian" apologist ... complicated further by Howard govt policy of aspirational nationalism (or "money grubbing racism" ) where people are led to believe that Australia is being overun and rorted by non whites..... wedge issue in politics and media for past 10-15 years..... where formerly migration policy was bipartisan....


Andrew Smith, B. Bus., M. Ed. Web http://www.aiec.hu Blog http://aiecquest.wordpress.com

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Guest wanderer

The college training of tradespeople had a number of flaws in it, mainly that you do not get an employable tradesperson coming out of a college and you would not blame any tradesperson for not wanting to take someone on to work with him without knowing anything of their skills.

 

That is why we still have apprentices.

 

Then on top of that as Jaimie Smith has so rightly pointed out there have vbeen shady/shonky practices that needed to be weeded out so as a flood of unemployable PR aspirants were being successful.

 

The government did not initiate that but certainly it seems they want to put a stop to it.

 

If it means that students think a little more seriously about being hooked into a course/college by shonky promoters then so be it and with all policing change there will be some disadvantaged, much the way of life in a regulated society.

 

Offshore assessments are done using state licensing and RTO people and I would not be surprised if contracts are let/even extended to cover onshore work as well and so no big deal in that.

 

Sure there may be those who'll attempt to find ways of scamming the system and so what's new to that and avenues for that closed, again the way of a progressive society - you have the cheaters and the hounds to run them down.

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Guest On the coast

Having looked at the info for the Job Ready Test, I can't see many employers giving out contracts to newly qualified students,and then letting TRA visit the workplace.

I know they had to stop the cheats, but this is a money making scheme that hits the honest students hard .There must be an easier way to stop the students who have been cheating the system,and punish them!

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There was and still is, state education regulators who have been asleep at the wheel (according to our deputy PM), now Federal government is using a sledgehammer to punish whole education sector versus minority of dodgy colleges....


Andrew Smith, B. Bus., M. Ed. Web http://www.aiec.hu Blog http://aiecquest.wordpress.com

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Guest CrossforGood

Thank you, Gollywobber, very honest attitude for future overseas students.

for "Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel", it is a good adage; but to Chris Evans, it is investment out of everyone's willingness, which means people sometimes bite themselves, or are bited by others when they want to eat

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