While some courses at Gunnedah TAFE have a waiting list of interested students, others are struggling to get the numbers to make them a success.
Gunnedah TAFE's boilermaker course, Cert III Engineering - Fabrication Trade, has had limited locals sign up, despite its 10-year hiatus from the Gunnedah course listing.
Namoi Valley Bricks' Michael Broekman is urging people to get on board with the new course in time for classes to start.
The managing director said he understood the drought had put a strain on employers recruiting new apprentices, but hoped this didn't discourage students from signing up to the course.
"I urge the business community that use the skill of boilermaking to have a look at this years staff list and whether they might be able to stretch and put on an apprentice," he said.
"We all understand it's a tough year and droughts and economic pressures are making it pretty tough but having a strong TAFE campus in your local town is a great asset and if we don't support it we may not have it in the future."
Mr Broekman said he was hoping the new pre-apprenticeship course being offered at Gunnedah TAFE would help kick-start new employment in town.
"It's been a very difficult process trying to get trades back in Gunnedah and then unfortunately we've hit a wall with the drought and that's causing some issues around businesses being able to commit but hopefully using the pre-apprenticeship course ... next year it will be a better year economically," he said.
A TAFE NSW spokesperson echoed Mr Broekman's comments on the pre-apprenticeship course.
"These kinds of initiatives lay the foundations for a lasting economic contribution through ongoing participation in education, training and employment," the spokesperson said.
The Gunnedah TAFE is in the final stages of a $3.36 million face-lift, and an official opening is expected to be held later this month.