Tim Pallas, Treasurer and Minister for Industrial Relations visits NCAT

On Tuesday October 10th the Victorian State Government Treasurer, the Hon. Tim Pallas and the Member for Preston, Nathan Lambert, visited NCAT. The Treasurer, in his capacity as the Minister for Industrial Relations, had earlier this year signed off on the initial 12-month funding for the Bring It On! Project Worker, Brigitte Reinbold.

The Project supports the NCAT Young Women in Trades and Technology Group who are working with local colleges, companies, unions and employer groups to encourage other young school-age women to consider studies and employment in Trades and Technology.

Bring It On! is the only school-based project of this nature in Victoria and the Treasurer visited NCAT specifically to meet with members of the NCAT Young Women in Trades & Technology Group and their Industry Partners. During his visit the Treasurer listened intently to members of the Young Women in Trades & Technology Group as they explained what they were studying and what industry sector they hoped to work in after they leave school.

The Minister and the College Principal co-signed and presented a Certificate of Appreciation to the Industry Team Members which includes New Plumbing Solutions, QA Electrical, Hutchinsons Builders, A&A Cabinet Impressions, Civil Infrastructure Group, the CFMEU, Women in Plumbing Vic and Northern Workwear and Safety. The Minister also witnessed the sign off on a Code of Respectful Conduct developed by Industry Team Members.

In his closing comments, the Minister congratulated the students, industry and community partners and all involved in the Bring It On! Project saying that women have a right to equality of employment in all industry sectors and that a “Woman’s place is where they want it to be”.

Read the full media release from the Hon. Tim Pallas

“Education and training are vital, and so are attitudes in the workplace. Every workplace conversation, policy or action can reinforce or challenge the beliefs and norms that drive inequity.”

– Tim Pallas, Minister for Industrial Relations

“NCAT is an outstanding school that constantly looks for new ways to break down barriers and entrenched ways of thinking about education and careers. We’ll keep backing schools that produce amazing results for their students.”

– Ben Carroll, Minister for Education


Bring It On! Young Women in the Trades and Technology at NCAT

In August we had the incredible pleasure of hosting ‘Bring It On!’. The evening event was organised and hosted by some our female pre- apprenticeship students who are a part of the NCAT Young Women in Trades & Technology group.

We were very fortunate to have the following organisations participate as industry hosts on the night:

Hutchinson Builders
New Plumbing Solutions
A&A Cabinets Impressions Group
QA Electrical
Women in Plumbing

Young women in Years 9, 10 and 11 from local schools, heard from and met qualified tradeswomen from Building and Construction, Electrotechnology, Plumbing and Furniture Making. They also heard from the local employers, union and employee organisations.

The event helped the students and their parents define their study options for the next few years and to increase their knowledge of pathways after school. Parents of some of the apprentices and pre- apprentice student spoke of their decision making journey and how their daughters were benefiting from the experiences.


TRADES FIT: Young Women In Trades and Tech Expo

The NCAT Young Women in the Trades and Technology Group represented the college in May at the Trades Fit: Young Women in Trades and Tech Expo. It was attended by 2,493 female and non-binary students. Hosted by the Department of Education at the Melbourne Convention Centre, the expo gave female and non-binary students to gain an insight into exciting career opportunities in traditionally male-dominated fields, through practical learning experiences, technology displays, information sessions and panel discussions.

A big thank you each member of the NCAT Young Women in the Trades and Technology Group for their tireless work and enthusiasm throughout the year.


Read more about our  Trades & Technology areas.


Northern College of the Arts and Technology (NCAT) is a Year 10 – 12 Government Secondary School specialising  in the Arts and Technology. We are a Registered Training Organisation (RTO Number 6736). NCAT is on Murray Road, Preston.


Automotive Technology

Get your hands dirty while learning everything that happens under the bonnet of car and makes them run. Work with cars and start your career in the auto industry buy completing the Certificate II in Automotive Vocational Preparation. Explore career options in the auto industry. Learn how to repair or replace key components of the car so you are job ready by the time you finish the course.

You will be doing all these things in a simulated workplace, but you will also learn to write and talk about them when trying to impress a prospective employer to gain an apprenticeship.

Early career starts are available for VCE and VCE VM students seeking a career in automotive technology. Students can integrate a VET certificate in automotive technology within a VCE or VCE VM syllabus. Practical exercises include removing and replacing cylinder head gaskets, carrying out basic electrical repairs, removing and replacing radiators, repairs to cooling systems, repairs and working on brakes, changing the clutch on a car, removing and refitting transmissions, changing front and rear springs, plus learning many basics and fundamentals of motor vehicle repair and service operation.

Automotive Technology enables you to:


Remove, repair, or replace car parts.


Troubleshoot issues and find a solution.


Work with both mechanical and electrical systems.


Change wheels and tyres.

The automotive trade is in high demand nationwide. Recent years have seen a shift in industry demand. NCAT has worked closely with the automotive industry and local employers to meet their training needs. A purpose-built automotive workshop encourages sustainable practices; state-of-the-art equipment and a practical, project-based curriculum simulate real world scenarios for hands-on student learning.

TestimonialsMitchell Seath (Automotive Pre-apprenticeship Student)

“I've grown since I've been here. I’m more confident and career-focused and generally happier because I actually see myself going somewhere.”

TestimonialsMitchell Seath (Automotive Pre-apprenticeship Student)

“I was considering it for a year and a half and now I don't know what took me so long. Don’t look back and just do it; honestly, it's changed my life.”

TestimonialsMitchell Seath (Automotive Pre-apprenticeship Student)

“I have a real passion for cars. We learn basic mechanics including the brakes, head gaskets and engines. We learn how to repair all cars.”

TestimonialsMitchell Seath (Automotive Technology Student)

“We do have work experience coming up of which I’ll be going to a local workshop to spend two weeks there - I'll basically be an apprentice during that time.”

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NCAT Automotive Vocational Preparation workshop

Course Structure

The Certificate II in Automotive Vocational Preparation provides students with knowledge, skills and competency to increase their employment prospects and future training pathways in the automotive industry. Students receive a nationally recognised certificate and the course helps them make an informed choice entering the automotive industry. This Pre-apprenticeship level course covers competencies at work entry level including basic safety and basic skills and knowledge for work in the automotive sector.

Activities & Tasks

During the course students perform a large variety of the basic repairs employers ask an auto apprentice to carry out.

The course is very hands on but there is some theory and written work for the knowledge component of the qualification. How to complete various types of workplace documentation and how to apply safe work practices are covered.


Practical repairs and maintenance tasks assessed by observation and questioning, and written tasks are all assessed using set criteria. Students are given a fair and adequate assessment process that includes multiple opportunities to demonstrate competency. Students are required to undertake a minimum of 80 hours of Structured Workplace Learning.

Eligibility & Prerequisites

It is recommended students have a minimum achievement level of Year 10 Maths and English or equivalent and an aptitude for practical work. If you have any individual needs please contact the college to discuss.