Flinders joins forces with Seeley International and TAFE SA for real-world training


Flinders Vice-Chancellor Professor Michael Barber, Seeley International Executive Chairman Frank Seeley, TAFE SA Chief Executive Jeff Gunningham (l-r)

Seeley International will partner with Flinders University and TAFE SA at Tonsley to establish a research and development centre for new energy efficient cooling and heating technologies.

The Memorandum of Understanding will provide an opportunity for Flinders University and TAFE SA students to have direct access to Seeley International’s state-of-the-art facilities and some of the world’s best cooling and heating experts.

Under the initiative, students will utilise Seeley International’s research, manufacturing and recently completed $1 million-plus testing facilities at Lonsdale to provide real-world training and receive guest lectures from Seeley International engineering specialists.

TAFE SA and Flinders University will also deliver training programs for Seeley International staff.

The agreement supports the vision of the Tonsley precinct to be a hub for innovative research, design, product development and manufacturing support for business activity across sectors such as clean technology, mining and energy, green construction and medical technologies.

Flinders Vice-Chancellor, Professor Michael Barber, said the new collaboration with TAFE SA and Seeley International offered valuable teaching and research opportunities for engineering students, particularly in the fields of mechanical and electrical engineering.

“Flinders students will have the opportunity to gain real insights into an advanced manufacturing business with work-integrated learning placements with Seeley International of up to 20 weeks,” Professor Barber said.

“Researchers will also join forces with Seeley International to explore new frontiers in energy efficient cooling and heating technologies and make a positive contribution towards a less energy intensive future.

“These will be the smart technologies of the future that will create employment and stimulate further economic activity in the southern part of Adelaide,” he said.

Flinders University’s presence at Tonsley will be the largest single investment in educational facilities made by the University since it was established nearly 50 years ago.

Work has already commenced on the six-storey $120 million building which will be home to the School of Computer Science, Engineering and Mathematics, the Medical Device Research Institute, Centre for NanoScale Science and Technology and the New Venture Institute from 2015.

Seeley International founder and executive chairman, Frank Seeley, said the initiative would provide students with practical on the job learning with the team and facilities that have helped to develop a number of market-leading and global-award winning products.

“Much of Seeley International’s success has been achieved because we have a culture that encourages innovation, and we want students to develop that mindset and have driving motivation to always improve,” Mr Seeley said.

“Being exposed to our operations should demonstrate first-hand to students that South Australia has manufacturers that are setting a global benchmark, and they don’t have to go interstate or overseas to thrive in an environment that encourages innovation and development,” he said.

“Our people are the best in the business, and Seeley International believes it is critically important to support younger South Australians to achieve their employment dreams, and this initiative can help to make that happen.”

TAFE SA, Chief Executive, Jeff Gunningham, said TAFE was delighted to be partnering with Seeley International and Flinders University.

“Partnering with Flinders University is part of an ongoing commitment to connecting TAFE SA and University initiatives to provide enhanced tertiary education options for South Australians,” Mr Gunningham said.

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