The North Coast College of Marine Studies - Brunswick Heads, NSW, Australia A school of excellence globally for the Marine Industry
This community based self-funded college was conceived with the purposes in mind of giving back to the community, and to provide opportunities for people of all ages to gain skills for the local, national and global marine industry.
COMS will become a registered training organisation (RTO) that provides high quality apprenticeships and training that are linked to its repair and maintenance capability in timber and other materials for boats up to 200 tonnes. It will primarily attract clients from the Northern Rivers of NSW and South East Queensland through its exceptional skill levels and industry relationships.
The vision is to using existing infrastructure (the former Fins restaurant premises) converted into classrooms while manufacturing would take place in neighbouring industrial estates, marina and slipway which surrounds the fishing co-op site.
Local resident, Phillip Walters, is a shipwright / marine surveyor / coxwain with over 33 years of industry experience and a passion for maintaining the art of boat building, both old and new. It is his vision combined with the support of many organisations for the Marine College to retain the maritime activities associated with Brunswick Heads boat harbour and provide a future for boat building and related skills training.
Phillip was enlisted to do shipwright work on the Thomas Hardy and Sons 45ft gaff rigged cutter NERIDA over a period of 10 years.
Click here to download reference from Sir James Hardy OBE
In the Brunswick Heads Business Retention and Expansion Survey Results November 2006, one of the 10 Recommendations from the 2006 survey was to support a feasibility study for the establishment of a Marine College at the boat harbour. It was identified that a new industry / educational facility (The North Coast College of Marine Studies) had support for the following reasons:
Improvement of the harbour
Low key development of the Fishing Co-op
Support marina and marine cultural centre
Support for the boatbuilding training
Development of a marine college and associated businesses
Boat industry, sailing club
Membership cards which offer members a vote at the AGM but discounts at all involved supporters / businesses.