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Trade industry backs Apprentice Awards

Sponsors from all sectors of the relevant trade industries jumped at the chance to contribute to the 2022 TAFE Queensland - SkillsTech Apprentice Awards.

Queensland’s leading trade industry bodies and suppliers gathered on November 10 to celebrate the prestigious 2022 TAFE Queensland – SkillsTech Apprentice Awards at Howard Smith Wharves in Brisbane. The event saw great support and sponsorship from the many trade industries that TAFE Queensland services, led by Main Event Sponsor Construction Skills Queensland.

Now in its fifth year, the night saw awards presented to the Apprentice of the Year in 14 trade categories ranging from carpentry to manufacturing and instrumentation, as well as special awards for the Outstanding and General Manager’s Apprentices of the Year.

Also awarded on the night, for the first time, were awards for the Small and Large Employers of the Year. Apprentice Employment Network, the peak body representing the interests of Group Training Organisations (GTOs) and employers in Queensland and the Northern Territory, sponsored the inaugural employer categories.

TradeTools got the apprentice categories underway, sponsoring the Carpentry Apprentice of the Year award, before Bunnings Warehouse and Kaboodle Kitchens paired up to sponsor the Furnishing Trades Apprentice of the Year category. Industry superannuation fund, CBUS proudly presented the Construction Apprentice of the Year award.

The sponsor list continued to feature industry bodies and suppliers in the construction finishing trades categories, with Dulux and Brick and Block Careers sponsoring the Painting & Decorating Apprentice of the Year and Bricklaying Apprentice of the Year awards, respectively.

Rounding out the many construction industry award sponsors were Reece, MEGT, and MIGAS Apprentice & Trainee Centre, who sponsored and awarded the hotly contested Plumbing & Gas Fitting, Electrical, and Refrigeration & Air Conditioning Apprentice of the Year categories, respectively.

As the top three apprentices in each category were recognised and presented their certificates, trophies, and prizes by representatives from TAFE Queensland and the respective sponsor, proceedings moved into the automotive and manufacturing trade categories.

First up was Viva Energy Australia, who jumped in to sponsor the Light Automotive Apprentice of the Year award, while Heavy Vehicle Industry Australia (HVIA) were keen to encourage training excellence for their industry’s apprentices by sponsoring the Heavy Commercial Industries Apprentice of the Year category.

Next up, another industry body in Weld Australia came to the party to sponsor the Engineering & Manufacturing Apprentice of the Year award, before the Caravan Trade and Industries Association of Queensland backed the inaugural Recreational Vehicle Apprentice of the Year award.

It was prominent provider of Industrial Automation, Yokogawa, who sponsored the Instrumentation Apprentice of the Year award, while MAS National presented the night’s youngest award winner with their prize as the School-based Apprentice of the Year.

The final two award categories presented on the night were the General Manger’s and Outstanding Apprentice of the Year categories.

Sponsored by BUSY At Work, the General Manager’s Apprentice of the Year award was presented to an apprentice who achieved greatness across the year at TAFE Queensland – SkillsTech while facing adversity that their peers are privileged to not have to overcome. BUSY At Work representative and General Manager, Cassandra Horan, joined TAFE Queensland – SkillsTech General Manager John Tucker in presenting this award on the night.

The final award was sponsored by Main Event Sponsor Construction Skills Queensland and recognised the apprentice who, in the eyes of the judging panel, was most outstanding in their skill and training commitment across 2022 at TAFE Queensland and in their workplace.

CSQ Assistant Director of Industry Development and Capability Kim Hetherington joined TAFE Queensland CEO Mary Campbell in awarding the honour of the Outstanding Apprentice of the Year award on the night.

TAFE Queensland – SkillsTech General Manager and host for the evening, John Tucker, said of the event, “tonight is a great celebration of apprentices who are showing excellence in their training. Apprentices who will go on to be leaders within their industries for Queensland.”

“At TAFE Queensland, we think it is important to recognise and celebrate apprentices and employers who go above and beyond in their training, and to have such great industry support from the many sponsors who have come on board for the fifth Apprentice Awards is fantastic,” Mr Tucker said.