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Liam nails stellar career following TAFE

Liam Carey is a TAFE Queensland Gold Coast carpentry graduate, and perhaps the most positive and magnetic tradesperson you’ll come to meet.

Having recently been named the 2021 Master Builders Queensland Apprentice of the Year, Liam will soon compete in the national competition, where his engaging and motivating approach to his career will undoubtedly stand out.

“I knew I wanted to get into a trade from a young age because I loved being outside and I struggled at school. I knew I could build things, so I started working [labouring] for different builders and trades for free at 16,” said Liam.

“I scored my first apprenticeship with a local company at 18. I had tried different trades, but I just fell in love with carpentry. I went to TAFE Queensland’s Trade Training Centre in Ashmore for my apprenticeship – I wasn’t good at studying [at school], but I found it easier at TAFE because I was interested in what I was learning."

“The teachers were always there to help me. Actually, all the teachers in the carpentry department are legends. I found when I put more effort in the teachers would help me even more because they saw I was not there to stuff around. Plus, who doesn’t want to teach something they love to another person who has the same passion?" he said.

Liam studied a Certificate III in Carpentry (CPC30211) by accessing the State Government’s Free TAFE for under 25s funding initiative, which sees eligible Queenslanders able to complete selected qualifications for free or low cost. Fully-funded high-priority training areas include construction, electrotechnology, engineering, childcare, nursing, and health.

As for the most enjoyable parts of the qualification – Liam found it great being surrounded by people who shared the same goal. “And also, the practical parts of the assessments. Yes, it was challenging – but nothing is too challenging if you’re determined!” Liam said.

These days Liam is employed by Kai Konstruct as Leading Hand Carpenter and works on luxury custom homes – something he truly loves, given every job is unique.

His day-to-day responsibilities see him share his knowledge with apprentices, keep his team motivated, and provide relevant guidance and information to successfully complete briefs.

“The projects I love doing the most are the ones that help people better their life. My goal is to build them their dream house and I will do my best to achieve that. Seeing a smile on a client’s face is the best feeling. You know, it’s not that difficult really. If you are passionate about what you do, the rest seems to fall into place,” shared Liam.

Liam will find out if he wins the national Apprentice of the Year title this April at the rescheduled Master Builders Australia awards – we have no doubt he’ll do well.

And for those considering a career in carpentry, Liam provided the following words of advice; “Don’t be scared to ask questions, and know that you’re going to stuff up so don’t worry about it. Shake it off and try again. If you love being outside and hands on, you will love carpentry!”