Australian Prime Minister, Hon Anthony Albanese MP, visited the Australian Power Quality Research Centre (APQRC) labs last week as part of his tour of the University as part of the announcement of $10 million in funding from the federal government to establish the Energy Futures Skills Centre. The centre, located at the University of Wollongong (UOW), is designed to upskill the clean energy workforce of the future. The APQRC, as members of the UOW Energy Futures Network, joined the Prime Minister on his tour.
During his visit, Mr Albanese met with PhD scholars Obaidur Rahman and Tharushi Mudiyanselage, who discussed the research they are undertaking at the APQRC.
Prime Minister Albanese engaging in a discussion with Obaidur Rahman, a UOW PhD scholar and staff member at the Australian Power Quality Research Centre (APQRC).
The Energy Futures Skills Centre, in partnership with the Renewable Energy Training Facility at Wollongong TAFE, will help build the energy workforce of the future by delivering skills development programs with courses jointly designed by UOW and TAFE NSW. The centre will use state-of-the-art teaching laboratories and upgraded equipment to provide real-world examples of clean energy technology for teaching and research. It will also collaborate with new and established businesses to develop business models in the clean energy and manufacturing space and operate as an energy outreach centre, engaging communities in the development of an equitable energy future with strategic partnerships between UOW, TAFE NSW, and industry partners.
The Prime Minister was impressed by UOW's history of innovation, praising the university and highlighting the importance of the Energy Skills Centre and Renewable Energy Training Facility during his visit.
“This announcement of an Energy Futures Skills Centre with $10 million in funding and $2.5 million dollars for a Renewable Energy Training Facility here in Wollongong is a major way in which our plans are fitting together,” Mr Albanese said.
The Energy Futures Skills Centre will deliver skills development programs with courses jointly designed by UOW and TAFE NSW. The Centre will also collaborate with new and established businesses to develop business models in the clean energy and manufacturing space and operate as an energy outreach centre, engaging communities in the development of an equitable energy future with strategic partnerships between UOW, TAFE NSW, and industry partners.
UOW and the APQRC have a long-established system of working closely with industry partners to provide sustainable solutions that support existing and emerging businesses as they look to adopt clean energy and manufacturing technologies. Through the APQRC, UOW has provided advice on better ways to operate electricity grids to support integration solar and wind generation technologies. Additionally, the university has developed innovative new building materials and approaches through the Sustainable Buildings Research Centre.
The APQRC looks forward to engaging with the Energy Futures Skills Centre and industry partners to build a clean future for Australia. APQRC staff were among the UOW representatives who welcomed the Prime Minister, along with Acting Vice-Chancellor Professor Alex Frino, Faculty of Engineering and Information Sciences Executive Dean Professor Gursel Alici, and Energy Futures Network Director Ty Christopher. The Prime Minister was accompanied on his visit by Member for Cunningham Alison Byrnes MP, Member for Whitlam and Assistant Treasurer the Hon Stephen Jones MP, State Member for Keira Ryan Park MP, and State Member for Wollongong Paul Scully MP.