Solar Victoria apprenticeships for women

Growing Victoria’s clean energy workforce.

A new round of apprenticeships for women wishing to start a fulfilling and rewarding career as a mechanical services plumber or air conditioning and refrigeration mechanic.

Recruitment through Plumbing Apprenticeships Victoria has now closed, having successfully funded six women who will be supported by this initiative until November 2025.

This new round of apprenticeships will recruit mechanical services plumbing apprentices and air conditioning and refrigeration mechanic apprentices to help address both skilled worker shortages and the underrepresentation of women in trades.

More skilled tradespeople who are equipped to install solar hot water systems and heat pumps that use less energy will also help Victorians save money and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Water heating is a major source of household energy use in Australia. Emissions can be reduced by installing energy efficient solar hot water or heat pump systems with appropriately accredited installers.

What is involved?

Under this initiative, plumbing and heating, ventilation, air conditioning and cooling (HVAC) businesses will be supported to hire a Solar Victoria apprentice – receiving a 50 per cent discount on hire costs for two years of the apprenticeship.

Women in Solar Victoria apprenticeships will receive financial incentives for two years of their apprenticeship, as well as a tool allowance when their apprenticeship starts.

Plumbing Apprenticeships Victoria will support apprentices to complete the following units from 22515VIC Course in Working Safely in Solar or equivalent before their first job:

  • CPCCWHS1001 Prepare to work safely in the construction industry (white card)
  • CPCCWHS2001 Apply OHS requirements, policies and procedures in the construction industry or equivalent.
  • VU22744 Work safely in the solar industry.

Apprentices will also be supported to complete Level 2 first aid within their first year. The unit CPCCM2010B Working safely at heights is recommended.

Who can do them?

For candidate apprentices

These apprenticeships are open to women who would like to start a full-time apprenticeship as a first or second-year apprentice plumber or air conditioning and refrigeration mechanic.

For host employers

Plumbing and heating ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) businesses registered with our Solar Homes Program can hire a Solar Victoria apprentice as a host employer through Plumbing Apprenticeships Victoria.

Hiring an apprentice through Plumbing Apprenticeships Victoria, a Group Training Organisation (GTO), can save your business considerable time and resources and includes the following benefits:

  • Flexibility – working with a GTO gives you the flexibility to hire an apprentice for the duration you need.
  • Recruitment, management and support – the GTO takes care of recruiting and employing apprentices to ensure you find the right person for your business. They then work with you to tailor their support services to meet the needs of your business and your apprentices, and will monitor the apprentice's skills training and provide support for their wellbeing.
  • Reduced administration – the GTO is responsible for the legal aspects of the employment contract and provides stress-free management and oversight. All government or statutory paperwork related to apprenticeships is completed and submitted by the GTO. They manage payroll and billing, Solar Victoria employment subsidies and apprentice incentives. They also cover all insurances and workers compensation.
  • Pre-employment safety training and equipment – the GTO will ensure all apprentices have completed the pre-employment safety training listed above at no cost to the host employer.

How to register

Apprentices and host employers will be recruited until 31 October 2023 for this two-year initiative managed through Plumbing Apprenticeships Victoria.

To register your interest as a candidate apprentice or a host employer under this initiative, please contact:

Plumbing Apprenticeships Victoria

Dean Arundell
Phone: (03) 9329 9622
Mobile: 0439 481 274

How much does it cost?

There is no cost for host employers and apprentice candidates to register their interest for these apprenticeships.

Host employers can hire an apprentice through Plumbing Apprenticeships Victoria at a 50 per cent discounted rate for the first two years.

Women wishing to do an apprenticeship under this initiative will receive financial incentives on commencement and at six-monthly intervals for two years of their apprenticeship, and a tool allowance on commencement.

About our commitment

Solar Victoria is investing $11 million to deliver a comprehensive training and workforce development program. Our aim is for solar industry workers to have the skills and capabilities to deliver our programs and to support growth in the solar energy industry.

Boosting training and workforce development will ensure Victoria has an ongoing supply of skilled workers to support growth in the renewable and clean energy sector – and we see women as essential to building a better industry.

We funded 16 solar electrical apprentices through Round One of Solar Victoria Apprenticeships for Women managed through Ai Group Apprentice and Trainee Centre and Apprenticeships Group Australia (AGA). See Building a better industry with women.

Any questions?

Please contact Plumbing Apprenticeships Victoria via the details provided above with any questions about these apprenticeships.

For information about other initiatives helping to grow Victoria’s clean energy workforce, see Training and workforce development.

For general enquiries about Solar Victoria’s training and workforce development program, please email


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