The Waikato Trades Academy (WTA) is funded by the New Zealand Government to provide secondary students with the opportunity to study at both school and Wintec. WTA gives students a head start; gaining specific and practical experience and skills in an industry-based setting, and the opportunity to move directly into a job, apprenticeship, or further study, on completion of secondary school.
As a WTA student, you can enrol in one of the programmes that WTA provides. This is an addition to your current school subject choice. You will be travelling to the Wintec campuses for practical, hands-on learning, typically one day a week.
The vocational pathways provide ways to achieve NCEA Level 1, 2 and 3, and develop pathways that progress to further study, training, and employment. The vocational pathways provide a framework to show how learning and achievement is valued in the workplace by aligning the learning to the skills needed for industries.
For regional areas, transport will be coordinated by WTA and your school, this is funded by the Ministry of Education. WTA programmes are fee-free
WTA Year 1 (Level 2) programmes:
- Vocational Pathway - Manufacturing and Technology Sector (Level 2)
- Vocational Pathway - Manufacturing and Technology Sector (Longveld) (Level 2)
- Vocational Pathway - Construction and Infrastructure Sector (Level 2)
- Certificate in Electrical Engineering (NCEA Level 2)
- Vocational Pathway - Services Industries Sector - Hairdressing and Beauty Therapy (NCEA Level 2)
- Vocational Pathway - Services Industries Sector - Café Skills (NCEA Level 2)
- Vocational Pathway - Social and Community Services Sector (NCEA Level 2)
- Outdoor Experience Level 2
WTA Year 2 (Level 3) programmes:
- Certificate in Building and Construction (Level 3)
- Certificate in Educational Achievement in Mechanical Engineering (General) (Level 3)
- Certificate in Education Achievement in Automotive Engineering (Level 3)
- Certificate in Service Industries Sector Level 3
- Certificate in Educational Achievement in Exercise Science (Level 3)
How WTA works
Year 11 or 12
You can start studying at the WTA. You will choose one of the available vocational pathways from our vocational pathways wheel.
In year one, we will provide you with a broad introduction to your chosen vocational pathway. You will attend Wintec between 30-33 days during the year (depending on your programme choice). While studying at the WTA you can achieve credits towards NCEA Level 2.
Year 12 or 13
You will continue your secondary school studies and your second year of WTA.
You will specialise in one career pathway. You will attend Wintec between 30 and 33 days during the year. You will study at Level 2 or 3 and gain credits towards your chosen career pathway. This year will include some self-directed learning. Some programmes may include industry work experience.
Age restrictions for WTA
You must be aged 15 or over at the start of the calendar year, be enrolled in a secondary school and be in Year 11, 12 or 13. Adult students and school leavers are not eligible for the WTA courses. If you are turning 15 between January and March, please contact the WTA team to discuss possible options.
Click here for the Ministry of Education Students on Work Experience Health & Safety Guide for Schools and Employers.
Programmes are subject to minimum numbers. Some programmes are restricted to maximum numbers of students' due to teaching space restrictions.
Graduating from WTA
After completing the two year WTA programme you may:
- Achieve NCEA Level 2 or 3 at school, with a Vocational Pathway Award.
- Follow previous WTA students into higher level study at Wintec, or have the skills to move into an apprenticeship or employment.