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Top award winner attributes confidence to trade career

ANSA Plumbing apprentice, Jasmine Turnbull, was named the prestigious Outstanding Apprentice of the Year at the 2021 TAFE Queensland – SkillsTech Apprentice Awards.

Held at the W Hotel in Brisbane’s CBD, the night celebrated the outstanding achievements of 37 apprentices who were selected as finalists from over 9,000 TAFE Queensland – SkillsTech apprentices across 13 award categories and trade areas including carpentry, plumbing, electrotechnology, refrigeration and air conditioning, manufacturing and engineering, heavy commercial vehicle, heavy commercial industries, light automotive, construction and furnishing.

Twenty-four year old Jasmine said she was proud of her achievement and that she was incredibly grateful to be recognised amongst so many other worthy finalists.

“Being awarded the Outstanding Apprentice of the Year feels amazing and it really hasn’t sunk in just yet. It’s a real honour and I just can’t believe it,” Jasmine said.

Jasmine originally started her working career in hospitality but had aspirations of finding a hands-on trade outside of an office environment. After enrolling in a TAFE Queensland pre-vocational plumbing course, Jasmine found her spark.

Jasmine credits TAFE Queensland for helping her take the next step into an apprenticeship and said that it was such an easy process.

“My employer had contacted TAFE’s Find your Apprentice service and I was able to do some work experience with them. Once that work experience was finished they decided to sign me up as an apprentice,” Jasmine said.

Jasmine has since excelled at her TAFE training impressing her teachers with her high level of dedication and skill. She has also become actively involved in a number of TAFE Queensland and National Association for Women in Construction (NAWIC) events where she has acted as a role model for females in trades, sharing her knowledge and experiences to encourage others to pursue a trade career.

Jasmine’s former TAFE Queensland Plumbing teacher, Rachael Keiley nominated her for the award and said Jasmine is an amazing woman and an inspiration to others females looking to embark on a trade career.

“Jasmine and I do a lot of industry representation together, we go out to different events representing TAFE, the vocational educational and training sector and women in industry,” Ms Keiley said.

“Jasmine has really been a stand out in industry and she’s stepped into multiple opportunities and really embraced being the face of apprenticeships.

“She’s such a down to earth person that has naturally amazing plumbing skills but it goes beyond that, she has confidence in her own skin. She’s also fluent; she can go from one meeting into another, be onsite and be one of the boys whilst also being able to stand in front of customers or clients and represent her employer as a representative of her employer,” she said.

Jasmine now has plans to complete a Certificate IV in Plumbing (CPC40912) and credits her trade to not only being a job that she can take anywhere but for also providing her the confidence to achieve her dreams.

“You will be so surprised at how a trade can benefit your life. I’ve gained so much confidence and been able to face fears both in my work and personal life,” Jasmine said.

“I’m constantly learning more and getting out of my comfort zone with the trade, so in my normal life, I’ve been able to do that as well,” Jasmine said.

TAFE Queensland – SkillsTech General Manager, John Tucker said that the awards night is a great opportunity to showcase the excellent training outcomes and success that our apprentices continue to make in their chosen industries.

“The recognition apprentices receive from not only TAFE Queensland but also their employers, colleagues and industry really helps to boost confidence and encourage our young tradespeople to take the next step in achieving their career goals,” Mr Tucker said.

Jasmine and her employer have also been able to take advantage of the Queensland Government’s Free apprenticeships for under 25s initiative which means that any training fees associated with Jasmine’s apprenticeship training are free.