Australia is one of the world’s most popular destinations for immigration. Abundant opportunities and a growing economy make it one of the best places to study, work, and build a future.
With a relatively complex immigration system, some hopeful migrants can find it difficult to identify a pathway to permanent resident status. One way to uncomplicate the process is to study a trade in Australia, which can lead to a recognized qualification, full-time work, and eventual eligibility for residency.
Here you can learn about the skills gap in Australia, the jobs that are in demand, and how you can go from being an international student to a permanent resident.
It All Begins with an Australian Student Visa
Before you can legally live and study in Australia, you will need to obtain a student visa. International students can apply for the Student Visa (Subclass 500).
Studying with the Intent of becoming an Australian Permanent Resident
Not every field of study is an ideal pathway to permanent residence. Australia is pushing to fill its skills gaps, many of which exist in the trades industry. Studying a trade course will allow you to develop key skills that are currently in demand.
Trade courses differ significantly from university qualifications and are typically completed within two years (some trade certificates can be completed in a shorter period). Courses offer classroom training combined with vocational training in a related industry.
Two-year trade courses for international students award the same qualifications given to Australian citizens and residents who complete four years of apprenticeship training.
The Trade Courses That are Most Likely to Lead to Permanent Resident Status in Australia
Not every trade course is guaranteed to result in Australian permanent resident status. However, there are several areas of study that can increase your chances of success. These courses provide benefits and training for fields where there is a shortage of skilled labour.
- Plumbing: There’s a high demand for qualified plumbers in Australia to support new commercial, residential, and industrial construction development. The skills shortage creates strong employment opportunities for qualified plumbers, with competitive salaries
- Wall and Floor Tiling: The growing construction sector in Australia has created a high demand for a wall and floor tiling Students who study a trade certificate in this field will learn how to read and interpret plans, operate equipment, repair and install tiles, and safely navigate a Jobsite.
- Fabrication Trade: An engineering trade certificate can lead to work in the fabrication trade as a professional fabricator or Topics covered throughout the certificate can include the use of handheld and industrial power tools, technical drawing interpretation, project computation, occupational health and safety, and sheet and plate assembly.
- Carpentry: Qualified carpenters can find strong job opportunities in the construction industry. A trade certificate covers material handling, setting out, wall and ceiling framing, measurement and calculation techniques, and a range of construction procedures.
- Automotive Technology: Australia has a robust automotive industry and a growing population. This creates a high need for automotive A trade certificate in automotive electrical technology is a strong pathway to permanent resident status. Students learn about technologies and service/repairs related to charging systems, air conditioning, instrument and warning systems, engines, soldering, and battery systems.
- Commercial Cookery: Australia’s booming hospitality industry has created a skills shortage for qualified cooks and chefs. Studying commercial cookery teaches various aspects of hospitality cost analysis and planning, meal planning and dietary requirements, environmental sustainability, and specific cooking skills and
- Automotive Mechanical Technology: Heavy vehicles are used throughout the Australian mining and construction sectors. A certificate in automotive mechanical technology will develop skills in fault diagnosis, heavy vehicle service and repair, light engine service and repair, transmission building and service, and all aspects of suspension, steering, brake, and electrical components. Graduates typically go on to work as automotive
Note – that the skills shortage can change over time. Some fields may become less likely to result in permanent residence if the skills gap is filled. Unlisted fields could become likely pathways to residency as the labour market changes.
The fields listed above were the most likely to lead to permanent residency as of September 2020.
Graduate Visa and Permanent Resident Visa After Completing Two Years of Study
Completing a trade qualification does not immediately lead to permanent residency. You will need to apply for a graduate visa to legally stay and work in Australia.
A graduate visa is valid for 18 months and can be extended to your partner and dependents. This visa is awarded to applicants who have completed a trade qualification that is relevant to the current skilled occupations list maintained by the Australian government. Applicants cannot be over 45 years old. The Graduate Work Stream 485 visa is for those who can nominate an occupation that is on the Medium to Long Term Strategic Skills List (MLTSSL) and
who has a degree, diploma, or trade qualification that is closely related to the nominated occupation. It allows its holder to stay in Australia for up to 18 months.
There are no restrictions on where you can live and work with a graduate visa.
Necessary work experience will lead towards your gaining a full suitable skills assessment. It is required that you complete 1725 hours of paid employment in your nominated occupation (or closely related) over at least 12 months from the start of your JRE in an Australian workplace approved by TRA.
There are several options available under General Skilled Migration Visas and Employer Nomination Sponsored visas –
- The 189 Skilled Independent Residence Visa allows you to live and work in Australia permanently without the need for government or private employer
- The Skilled Nominated 190 Visa is a points-tested permanent visa for skilled workers who are nominated by an Australian State or Territory
- There are still options if you don’t qualify for a permanent resident visa after your graduate visa expires. A 491 Regional Sponsored Visa can offer a pathway to permanent status. This visa allows employment in specialized regions for 5
- The 186 visa is a permanent residency visa that requires the sponsorship of a nominating Australian employer/business. There are three visa streams:
- Direct Entry (‘DE’) stream
- Temporary Residence Transition (‘TRT’) stream
- Labour Agreement (‘LA’) stream
- The 494 Visa allows skilled workers to be sponsored by an Australian employer in a regional area for up to five years. 494 Visa holders can: • live and work in Australia for up to five years (PR option after working 3 years with the same employer) • include immediate family on 494 visa
- The TSS visa subclass 482 is a temporary visa which permits the holder to live in Australia, while working full-time for the sponsoring employer, in the nominated position. Applicants for a TSS visa may include dependent family members in their application. After working with the same employer (if the occupation is in the long term list may lead to Permanent Residency and if your occupation falls under short-term list, you can apply this visa for 2 + 2 years and choose the GSM pathway for Permanent Residency)
You must score at least 65 points against points test factors to be eligible to be invited to apply for your visa.
Please note: Each state has its own criteria to be satisfied which applicants have to meet at the time of lodgement of their invitation and these criteria are different from the common criteria from DoHA which applicants must meet as per to secure the positive outcome.
Study a Trade to become an Australian Permanent Resident
The trades industry is the most likely path to residency for international students. Australia’s skills shortage has created a real opportunity for migrants. You can obtain a world-class education while developing in-demand skills and qualifications that will gain you recognition in a broad range of industries.
Australia’s highly developed economy, and high standard of living both make the country a
top tier destination where you can create stability and security for your future.
Commonwealth Register of Institutions and Courses for Overseas Students (CRICOS) lists all Australian education providers that offer courses to people studying in Australia on student visas and the courses offered.
That has been a lot of information. I hope this has been helpful to help with your visa applications. Education Embassy has serviced a great number of successful clients through all types and complications of trade-related applications. Contact us today to start your future in Australia. Call 0 474 600 600, 0410 056 563, or book online today to speak to our migration specialists. Stay tuned until next time and do follow us on our Facebook profile for affirmative and regular updates.
Hemant Dua Education Embassy