The increase in the number of students opting for construction related courses is another sign of the growing confidence about the prospects for the industry, according to the Construction Industry Federation (CIF).
The CIF were speaking after figures released by the Central Applications Office (CAO) showed significant growth in the numbers hoping to undertake third level study in courses associated with construction.
Speaking in reaction to the figures, CIF Director General Tom Parlon said, “We are delighted to see more and more students are realising there are strong career prospects in the construction industry. The industry provides a great platform for those who want to pursue interesting and financially rewarding careers. It is also an industry which will offer a significant level of job opportunities in the years ahead. This can be a vital consideration for anyone who is deciding on what route of study they want to undertake at third level.
“The construction sector needs more qualified young people. The industry has to ensure there is a strong supply of people pursuing construction careers to meet the projected employment levels. This includes third level graduates and apprentices – there will be plenty of opportunities for all those looking to take up construction as a career.
“Last year construction was responsible for almost one out of every two additional jobs created in the Irish economy. According to the CSO there were 29,100 extra jobs created throughout the economy last year and 13,100 of them were in the construction sector.
“Growth in employment is expected to continue in the coming years as the levels of activity increase throughout the industry. The Government has targeted the creation of 60,000 additional construction jobs by 2020, while the expected increase in house building and infrastructure related projects will also create vast employment opportunities.
“There is growing confidence throughout the economy about the prospects for the construction industry. Students have picked up on that trend and the increase in the number of young people opting for construction courses is another positive sign. Students can see that there will be a need for a substantial numbers of graduates over the coming years and I know everyone in the industry will be delighted to see more students are looking to take on construction related careers. Our hope is that we will continue to see more young people opting for construction courses or taking up apprenticeships in the industry in the years ahead,” Mr. Parlon concluded.