perhaps we really need to look at the mess the TAFE system has become. The original intent of TAFE was exactly that, Technical & Further Education , ie , up skilling and retraining existing employees to meet the changing demand of the the workforce. However , it has subsequently become a Private Provider scam that rips off employers, employees and new starts , and some existing employers have taken advantage of this to skim the State Governments as well. ( The Victorian State IBAC / Independent Broad-based Anti corruption Commission has investigated a number of persons who ran these scams affecting Metro Trains, V/Line and other Government entities )
The original concept behind TAFE I thought was a good idea , and I know of a number of people whom successful completion of TAFE courses led to better jobs and or new careers .
I note Don Dunstan's point about more graduates than jobs , but part of the disconnect here is that what were once relatively secure jobs are no longer so. Engineering and the sciences in particular have become very short term , with a lack of continuity , and this results in qualified and experienced people seeking more secure work, but which does not utilize their skills.
I am aware of two electrical engineers who drive trains in Melbourne for this very reason. One of these men has an annual get together with his graduating class of 22 persons , of which only one is still an electrical engineer , the other 21 do non electrical engineering jobs that have work continuity.
I am also aware of a PhD Graduate in Molecular Chemistry who works in Train Control for exactly the same reason .
In all of these instances , it is not a lack of skill or experience, but a lack of work continuity that has forced them out of their areas of speciality.
We have Governments which talk about the need for highly skilled technical people, employers moaning about the shortage of qualified people , yet clearly, the problem is not one of shortage of qualified people, but an unwillingness to commit to employing qualified people in full time work.