Captain Dr Paul Little, Principal & Chief Executive of City of Glasgow College, has been announced as the Chair of the UK’s first Shipbuilding Skills Taskforce.
The Taskforce, announced in March 2022 as part of the cross-government National Shipbuilding Strategy (NsbS), aims to develop a world-leading skills strategy that will boost training and job opportunities in the shipbuilding industry, particularly those related to new and emerging technologies and zero-emission shipping.
Dr Little, an academic leader with a part-time maritime career, has more than 40 years naval insight as a veteran Coastguard Officer, Younger Brother of Trinity House, Fellow of the Nautical Institute, Member of the UK’s Merchant Navy Board and Member of both the Merchant Navy and the Royal Navy Associations.
He will be joined by 20 members from across the UK, covering industry including SMEs and larger organisations, training providers and trade representative bodies.
Minister for Skills Alex Burghart said: “Making sure we can deliver more opportunities for people to train or upskill will be essential to providing the UK shipbuilding industry with the talent pipeline it needs to thrive and get more people into jobs.
“I’m delighted announce the appointment of Captain Dr Paul Little as the Chair of the UK Shipbuilding Skills Taskforce. I know he and all the other members will bring the experience, passion and understanding needed to make this Taskforce a success. I look forward to hearing about their work as the strategy develops.”
The first meeting of the Taskforce is expected to take place in June and members will soon begin working with the wider industry to explore skills needs and shortages.
Dr Little added: “I am honoured and delighted to be appointed as Chair of the UK Shipbuilding Skills Taskforce, as it will allow me to combine my lifelong passions for Skills and Maritime. Some of the very best and most famous ships throughout history were built in yards across the UK, by a talented workforce of naval architects, master technicians and skilled apprentices.
”I am therefore keen to get started with the first meeting of our highly experienced Taskforce to examine the existing and future shipbuilding skills supply chain and to identify any additional upskilling and reskilling requirements. I look forward to working very closely with the National Shipbuilding Office, Civil & Military stakeholders, Colleges and Schools to deliver a renaissance in UK Shipbuilding.”
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