2019 NSW Training Awards Winners

Meet the Award category winners of 2019.

Individual Awards Category

2019 Apprentice of the Year

Nelson Florimo

Qualification: Certificate III in Carpentry
Trained by: TAFE NSW
Employed by: North Construction & Building Pty Ltd
Region: Central Coast Region

Nelson has fulfilled a childhood goal by training in carpentry. Naturally drawn towards projects that functionally and aesthetically enhance neighbourhoods, Nelson completed his qualification in Carpentry with North Construction & Building and TAFE NSW.

Nelson thrives on designing and creating from a mixture of resources and materials, showing that great things can be achieved with human skills.

Motivated to “leave behind a legacy with each building, renovation, extension or development” he is involved in, Nelson radiates pride for his industry.

Nelson won TAFE NSW President's Award for his outstanding work (2017) and was named Winner of the Master Builders Association Commercial Apprentice of the Year award (2018).

2019 Trainee of the Year

Samuel Heffernan

Qualification: Certificate III in Sport and Recreation
Trained by: TAFE NSW
Employed by: Catholic Education Diocese of Wagga Wagga
Hosted by: Westpac
Region: Riverina Region

Wagga Wagga based 19 year old Samuel successfully completed his certification in Sport and Recreation offered by TAFE NSW whilst under the guidance provided of the Catholic Education Diocese of Wagga Wagga. With his new found skills Samuel confidently organised 32 school sporting carnivals for his Diocese and has coached sporting sides representing the Diocese to a high standard.

The traineeship fuelled Samuel’s desire to do further study in the education sector cementing his decision to pursue this vocation in the future.

Former School Captain of his College, Captain of his local and school football side and a musical performer, Samuel’s training has further enhanced his leadership and communication skills.

2019 School Based Apprentice/Trainee of the Year

Arcadia Meldrum

Qualification: Certificate III in Tourism
Trained by: Catholic Schools Office, Lismore Diocese
Employed by: Sails Port Macquarie
School: Newman Senior Technical College
Region: North Coast & Mid North Coast Region

Alongside her HSC, Arcadia is completing a Certificate III in Tourism. Demonstrating leadership capabilities at school, work and in her personal life, Arcadia is an elected member of the Student Representative Council at her College as well as an avid sportswoman.

Arcadia’s work in the Tourism industry has involved planning high profile events such as the Salvation Army Dinner and the Cancer Council’s Dancing with the Stars. Arcadia was chosen to represent her employer at Luminosity, an annual youth summit and was also selected to attend World Skills in Sydney to take part in delivering the five day event.

2019 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Student of the Year

Jemasin Joyce

Qualificaiton: Certificate II in Business
Trained by: Australian College of Commerce and Management Pty Ltd
Employed by: 1300apprentice
Hosted by: Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Ltd
School: Kiama High School
Region: Illawarra & South East NSW Region

Wiradjuri woman from the Cowra area, ambitious and proactive Jemasin successfully balanced her school based apprenticeship in Business conducted via 1300 Apprentice with school, sport, community and family commitments.

Putting learning into practice whilst at the ANZ Bank at Dapto, Jemasin has shown a passion for customer service and is demonstrating outstanding skills in communication, teamwork, numeracy, problem solving and cash handling.

Jemasin is active in her community having helped organise cultural events such as NAIDOC week celebrations, AIME events, representing Indigenous Australia in the Oceania Cup Tag Football tournament, state school athletics and zone cross country.

2019 Vocational Student of the Year

Christian Fritze

Qualification: Certificate III in Barbering
Trained by: Joblink Plus Training
Employed by: 2340 Barber Shop
Region: New England Region

Tamworth based Christian has found his perfect position at the 2340 Barbershop thanks to his outstanding efforts in completing his Certificate and his ‘can do’ attitude.

Dedicated and enthusiastic Christian has overcome challenges as a visually impaired person by honing his skills through “lots of practice” allowing him to deliver high standard haircut techniques in the workplace.

A born leader and mentor, Christian aims to study his TAE in order to train up-and-coming barbers.

Christian has actively represented his community at the Return to Sport Expo, Compassion Bali Missions and he was the winner of the Air Force Cadets Ian Martin Cadet of the Year Award.

2019 VET Trainer/Teacher of the Year

Sarah Ford

Employed by: Public Schools NSW, Tamworth
Field of Study: Primary Industries

Experienced and agile, the enthusiastic, and active Sarah delivers a diverse range of VET programs including Agriculture, Horticulture, Hospitality and Food and Beverage. Sarah’s employer Rivers Secondary College, Richmond River High Campus has highlighted her outstanding delivery of Primary Industries.

Sarah juggles multiple roles within the school community with confidence including Technological and Applied Studies (TAS) Head Teacher, accomplished Classroom Teacher including VET courses, School Community Connections Coordinator, Show Team Coordinator, and School Farm Manager.

Sarah is a motivated, compassionate, supportive teacher who strives to achieve the school motto “Inspiring Learning for Life-Long Success”.

2019 VET in Schools Student of the Year

Kelsey Commons

Qualification: Certificate III in Live Production and Services
Trained by: Sydney Catholic Schools
School: Southern Cross Catholic Vocational College
Region: Southern & South Western Sydney Region

A keen, award winning Scout leader, photographer and videographer, creative Kelsey is undertaking multiple qualifications at Southern Cross Catholic Vocational College (Sydney Catholic Schools) including certification in Live Production & Services, in Media and in Hospitality (Food & Beverage).

Inspired by her mother’s work with her photography business, Kelsey has a passion for the Entertainment Industry, as it provides an outlet for her creativity. Kelsey hopes to successfully leverage her multifaceted VET training, and transition into full time employment with a broad set of skills applicable to this industry.

Organisation Awards Category

2019 Industry Collaboration Award

Hunter Valley Training Company and Service NSW Traineeship Program

Collaboration by: HVTC and Service NSW

HVTC and Service NSW have worked together to place over 100 Certificate III Customer Engagement trainees in service centres right across the state.

This industry partnership has provided valuable employment and training opportunities to school leavers and job seekers in many rural and regional communities. The program provided an opportunity to increase Indigenous employment across the state and introduce a younger workforce to Service NSW with many participants being under 25 years.

Through the delivery of the Certificate III in Customer Engagement qualification via an online training platform, HVTC’s RTO division successfully provided consistent training across regional and metropolitan NSW.

2019 Large Employer of the Year

John Holland CPB Ghella Joint Venture

John Holland CPB Ghella (JHCPBG) is the primary tunnelling contractor for the Tunnel and Station Excavation Works (TSE) for Sydney Metro City & Southwest – Australia’s biggest public transport project.

The infrastructure industry is currently experiencing a significant boom within Sydney, as a result JHCPBG is working to provide skills, knowledge and experience to up-skill existing industry workers along with capitalising on transferable skills from other industries. Currently, 122 [13%] of JHCPBG’s direct staff and workforce are engaged as apprentices and trainees undertaking qualifications in Leadership & Management, Business Services, Civil Construction, Civil Supervision and Building and Construction.

2019 Medium Employer of the Year

Obieco Industries

Obieco Industries is a Tamworth based licensed vehicle body building manufacturer. With 60 staff including 10 apprentices across the disciplines of Metal Fabrication, Mechanical Engineering, Auto Electrical and Automotive Refinishing, Obieco Industries provides a ‘turnkey’ solution for customers. Services include design, manufacture and installation. Obieco’s range of specialist and custom builds include ute trays, service bodies, custom truck builds, tippers, flat beds.

Clients include Telstra, Origin Energy, Essential Energy, NPWS, ARTC, and many local government councils. Obieco Industries’ has earned a reputation as one of the largest and most qualified body builders in NSW, as Obieco’s product is distributed Australia wide.

2019 Small Training Provider of the Year

Catholic Education Diocese of Parramatta

Catholic Education Diocese of Parramatta (CEDP) provides quality learning and teaching in a faith-centred environment. It comprises eighty schools and five early learning centres.

CEDP’s strategic intent is to provide quality Catholic schooling by strengthening the professional lives of staff, to improve the learning outcomes for each student within a Catholic community.

CEDP RTO exists to extend study options for students. Most VET students are aged 14 – 18 years and are beginning their vocational journey. Providing students with opportunities to explore their interests is the driver for CEDP RTO under its strategic intent to improve the learning outcomes for each student.

Special Industry Awards Category

2019 Phil Darby Memorial Award - Encouragement Award for an Apprentice or Trainee

Troy Ward

Qualification: Certificate III in Electrotechnology - Electrician
Trained by: TAFE NSW
Employed by: Infinity Lifts Pty Ltd
Hosted by: Vertel
Region: Central & Northern Sydney Region

Living by the motto, “there’s no such thing as a problem, only a solution”, determined Sydney based tradesman Troy has overcome hurdles including moving interstate and a hearing impairment to excel in his apprenticeship.

Through his determination and the assistance of hearing technology, Troy navigated the obstacles and his employer rewarded his hard work with leadership responsibilities and a new work vehicle.

Formally a Licensed Electrician, Troy mentors other apprentices as well as young deaf and hearing impaired students through the “Hear for you” program.

2019 Special Award for a Woman in a Non-Traditional Trade or Vocation

Karyn Downs

Qualification: Certificate III in ESI - Power Systems - Distribution Overhead
Trained by: Endeavour Energy
Employed by: Endeavour Energy
Region: Southern & South Western Sydney Region

Karyn Downs has proven that women can successfully complete a dual trade apprenticeship in the male-dominated Electricity Supply Industry.

Through training at Endeavour Energy’s Technical Training Centre in South Western Sydney, Karyn is experienced in safety systems and network operations.

Karyn brings a wealth of life and work experience to Endeavour’s new Women in Trade Support Network where tradeswomen and apprentices connect with other women in STEM roles.

Karyn showed immense commitment to her trade as she had two children during her extended apprenticeship and as the only woman in her apprentice cohort, Karyn is an active ambassador for women in a non-traditional trade.


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