Electrical apprentice Emily Waras clinches top Apprentice of the Year Award

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Electrical apprentice Emily Waras clinches top Apprentice of the Year Award

ACE

Kangan Institute has named electrotechnology apprentice Emily Waras the 2018 Apprentice of the Year.

The award was amongst 36 awards presented to students at Kangan Institute’s Apprentice and Industry Awards ceremony last night. The event was attended by more than 300 guests, including representatives from the Department of Education and Training and Higher Education Skills Group, industry, employers and award sponsors.

Ms. Waras, who currently works at Downer Rail, said many factors contributed to her success, particularly when she became pregnant midway through her apprenticeship.

“I had a rough pregnancy and it became very hard to work in the industry. But Downer really supported me and gave me jobs I was able to do,” she said.

“I took six months off as part of maternity leave and that put me six months behind everyone else at my stage. When I returned, I commenced double the studies that most normal apprentices do and I studied an extra day a week. Once I finished that, I started night school for a post-trade certificate.”

The hard work was well worth it for Ms. Waras who loves her work as an electrician.

“I love that I’m challenged everyday with my job and that I’m professionally respected. If someone asked me what I do, I’m very happy to tell them I’m an apprentice electrician and I work in rail,” she said.

“My training has definitely transformed my life. I wouldn’t have my job if I didn’t go to TAFE – the teachers at Kangan Institute have been amazing.”

Ms. Waras has a special word of thanks for her husband, whom she says introduced her to the trade.

“I wouldn’t be in this industry if not for my husband. I worked as his trades assistant for two years and realised that I wanted to go down this path. That’s when I went for my apprenticeship,” she said.

“He’s been incredibly supportive with being at home for our son, when I’m working late or during the weekend, or when I’m doing extra studies.

“I’m really proud of myself for winning the Apprentice of the Year award. I feel like all my hard work has finally been recognised.” 

Kangan Institute CEO Trevor Schwenke congratulated the award winners and highlighted the role of government and industry support in vocational education and training excellence.

“Kangan Institute is very proud to celebrate the achievements our talented apprentices through the annual Apprentice and Industry Awards Ceremony,” he said.

“I’d like to congratulate all the award winners – we hope this award will empower you to achieve greater success and be role models for other apprentices starting on this path.

“I’d also like to thank the Victorian Government, our industry partners and award sponsors. Their steadfast support for vocational education and training excellence enables us to continue delivering quality training and producing skilled talents.”

Full list of award winners:

Major awards:

  • Kangan Institute Apprentice of the Year – Emily Waras of Keilor (employed by Downer Rail)
  • Apprentice of the Year: Electrical – Emily Waras of Keilor (employed by Downer Rail)
    Sponsored by Energy Safe Victoria
  • Apprentice of the Year: Automotive and Lionel Gell School of Instruction Award in Automotive – Kate Kesper of Traralgon
    Sponsored by Sir Henry Royce Foundation
  • Apprentice of the Year: Construction – Joshua Walker of South Morang (employed by Ilcon Building)
    Sponsored by Ascot Group
  • Apprentice of the Year: Engineering – David Sammut of Mill Park (employed by Dolphin Products)       
    Sponsored by Rotary Club of Essendon
  • Apprentice of the Year: Landscape Construction –Adrian Talarico of Wallan (employed by Vine Landscaping Design Construction Maintenance)
  • Apprentice of the Year: Commercial Cookery – Caitlyn Delaney of Wallan (employed by University House)     
    Sponsored by Hudson Pacific
  • Apprentice of the Year: Bakery – Deepak Sharma of Sunshine West (employed by Borgcraft)
    Sponsored by Australian Bakery and Pizza
  • Apprentice of the Year: Hairdressing – Caroline Daoud of Epping (employed by UVA Salon)
    Sponsored by Shear Genius Scissor Smith & De Lorenzo

Construction and Industrial awards:

  • Pre-Apprentice of the Year - Adem Akyayla of Fawkner
    Sponsored by Apprenticeship Employment Network
  • Oustanding Work Place Based Student - Steven Durrant       of Mooroolbark
    Sponsored by KPS Solutions Group
  • Outstanding Apprentice: Brick Laying/Block Laying - Adam Liddell of Hampton Park (employed by T.J.E. Bricklaying)
    Sponsored by Ox Tools
  • Outstanding Apprentice: Wall and Ceiling Lining – Jack Donat of Cuhuna (employed by Advanced Interior Lining)
  • Ascot Group Outstanding Female Apprentice: Construction and Industrial – Vicki Lake of Wallan (employed by Deltec Electrics)
    Sponsored by Ascot Group
  • Outstanding Certificate III in Concreting – Benjamin Jeffery of Drouin
    Sponsored by McKay Training
  • Outstanding Certificate III in Construction Waterproofing – Michael Carpentier of Melton South
    Sponsored by McKay Training
  • Automotive awards:

    • A.R. (Dick) Jackson Award - Mohamed Ayas of Meadow Heights (employed by A.J. Service Centre)
      Sponsored by Rotary Club of Coburg
    • Automotive Apprentice of the Year: Motorcycle – Ashley Ellingford of Oakleigh East (employed by Mick Hone Motorcycles)
      Sponsored by Kawasaki Australia
    • Automotive Apprentice of the Year: Heavy Vehicle – Brian Branzuela of Brookfield (employed by K & S Freighters)
      Sponsored by Viva Energy Shell Rimula
    • Sir Henry Royce Foundation Award for Excellence – James Simpson of Woodend (employed by Barker Trailers)   
      Sponsored by Sir Henry Royce Foundation
    • Automotive Electrical Achievement Award – Brianny Nickson of Kialla (employed by Niko Auto Electrics) 
      Sponsored by Training Systems Australia
    • Automotive Apprentice of the Year: Automotive Electrical - Kate Kesper of Traralgon     
      Sponsored by Ashdown Ingram
    • Automotive Pre-Apprentice of the Year Award – Lauren Honey of Reservoir (employed by AHG Services and Preston Toyota)   
      Sponsored by Albert Park Rotary Club
    • Automotive Apprentice of the Year: Automotive Refinishing Technology – Luke Peters of Keilor (employed by SPST Pty Ltd)      
      Sponsored by PPG Industries
    • Automotive Apprentice of the Year: School Based – Joshua Lemonis of Kinglake West (employed by Preston Auto Gas)          
      Sponsored by Century Yuasa Batteries
    • Automotive Student of the Year: Motorsport – Sam Montesano        of Brunswick West
      Sponsored by WPC Group
    • Automotive Apprentice of the Year: Automotive Parts Interpreting – Keegan Templeton of Northcote (employed by Cummins South Pacific)
      Sponsored by MTAA Superannuation Fund
    • Automotive Apprentice of the Year: Heavy Vehicle (Key Client) – Stephanie Wojtala of Craigieburn (employed by Cummins South Pacific)
      Sponsored by Dana Australia
    • Automotive Apprentice of the Year: Light Vehicle (Key Client) – Jack Chaplin of Camberwell (employed by WPC Bendigo and Porsche Melbourne)
      Sponsored by SP Tools
    • Automotive Apprentice of the Year: Automotive Body Repair (Key Client - Sheen Group) – Joshua Nelson of Fawkner (employed by Lyons Body Works Prestige Collision Repair)
      Sponsored by Sheen Group
    • Automotive Apprentice of the Year: Automotive Refinishing Technology (Key Client - Sheen Group) – Bethany Lawrie of Cranbourne (employed by Sheen Panel Service Dandenong)
      Sponsored by Sheen Group
    • Automotive Apprentice of the Year: Automotive Body Repair – Jackson Holloway of Nicholson (employed by Dwyers Toyota)   
      Sponsored by Sheen Group
    • Automotive Apprentice of the Year: Marine Technology – Leigh Mirams of Willow Grove (employed by Warragul Marine Centre)
      Sponsored by Mercury Marine
    • Automotive Apprentice of the Year: Outdoor Power Equipment – Jack Briscoe or Darley (employed by Bacchus Marsh Mowers)           
      Sponsored by Briggs and Stratton
    • Automotive Apprentice of the Year: Light Vehicle – Matthew Mitchell         of Rowville (employed by Onsite Automotive)        
      Sponsored by Gates Australia
    • Automotive Inspirational Student of the Year – Meiraf Tlahun of Brunswick (employed by J. Pringle Automotive)
      Sponsored by 3M

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