2017 Apprentice of the year winners

It was a tough choice this year but after much deliberation, the winners are in…

1300apprentice’s CEO Jane Kennedy stated that “this year many of our nominees had achieved outstanding success in the off-the-job training and more than usual had undertaken extra studies to secure their long-term career goals. It is exciting for us at 1300apprentice to see the enthusiasm that apprentices and trainees put into their career to achieve these outstanding results and gain incredible skills. This, of course, makes the judging each year that little more difficult from the outstanding participants. A big thank you to our supportive host employers who help all of our apprentices and trainees get the first step in their careers, thank you all for your continued effort and support”.

1300apprentice would like to thank the generous support from our sponsors MEGT Australian Apprenticeship Support Network and Australian College of Commerce and Management. It is through their generosity that our winners are rewarded!

Once again, congratulations to all who entered and we look forward to seeing what 2018 will bring!

Winner – Apprentice of the Year Overall & Winner – Apprentice of the Year Engineering
Cameron Bennett
Certificate III in Engineering- Fabrication
Field Officer – Meagan Thorpe

Cameron started his apprenticeship a little later than our average employee at the age of 37. During his apprenticeship, Cameron impressed his Host employer and 1300apprentice with his enthusiasm for learning undertaking many extra courses in his own time to improve his skills, including a Certificate IV Engineering Certificate – to quote Cameron ‘if you get trained, you can get ahead’. Cameron also travelled many KM’s to gain skills and even relocated so that he was mid-way to work and his preferred RTO. This extra commitment to his career and learning along with a perfect attendance record and his Host employer recommendation makes Cameron an exemplary role model and ambassador for apprenticeships and the career path they offer.

Winner – Trainee of the Year Overall & Winner – Trainee of the Year Finance
Paolo Riccardi
Certificate III in Account Administration
Field Officer – Lorraine Hull

Paolo commenced a two-year Traineeship in Account Administration and has already completed the off-the-job training well ahead of time. Paolo has such an excellent understanding of his role that he is now training a co-worker, demonstrating his practical understanding of the role. Paolo has also received a newly implemented employee award with his Host employer – ‘The Amazing Award’ awarded to Paolo for general performance – a great effort for someone who has been there for just under a year. Paolo’s commitment to learning and to working above his initial job role has given him a terrific leap into a career.

Winner – Apprentice of the Year- Building & Construction
Cameron Kolster
Certificate III in Carpentry
Field Officer – Meagan Thorpe

Cameron has been an exemplary role model with his Host employer and is already teaching and supervising apprentices. Cameron made the decision to put aside a promising AFL career and to concentrate on his Apprenticeship and a career in the building industry. This he has done with outstanding results, with 100% grades in everything except one subject in his trade certificate. Cameron has also shown an outstanding commitment to his work with a 100% attendance record – excellent results for four years in the workforce. Cameron has proven to be a responsible leader during his time and his skill level has set him on the course to be an outstanding tradesman.

Winner – Apprentice of the Year- Electrotechnology
Cameron Brown
Certificate III in Electrotechnology Electrician
Field Officer – Lorraine Hull

Cameron commenced with his host employer 4 years ago and has proven to be an outstanding apprentice in all aspects of his work. He understands instructions and works well and accurately without supervision. He has the ability to think outside the box with new ideas to save time and efficiency. Cameron’s commitment to his chosen career is reflected in him doing domestic work on weekends to expand his knowledge base. Although Cameron lives a long distance from work sites, he always arrives early to ensure that his team is not disadvantaged by him being late.

Winner – Apprentice of the Year- Horticulture
Daniella Manessi
Certificate III in Parks & Gardens
Field Officer – Lorraine Hull

Daniella has proven to be a highly skilled apprentice, showing initiative in trying new ways, learning new equipment that would progress her knowledge and be asked to step into the Acting Team Leader role quite early on. Daniella took on this trade to help her ultimate goal of becoming a landscape designer, so during her apprenticeship, she studied in her own time and at her own expense a Diploma in Landscape Design. She has now realised her dream, completing four months early so that she can commence her next career move as a Junior Landscape Designer with a large organisation.

Winner- Apprentice of the Year- Other Category
Luke Jacobs
Certificate III in Cabinet Making
Field Officer – Meagan Thorpe

Luke has been described as a high achiever whose work ethic is more than excellent. Luke builds custom-made products and respects the quality required for the individual jobs and is more than capable of completing these jobs from start to finish. Luke is now supervising an apprentice and has shown excellent leadership skills. Luke has shown his outstanding commitment to his career by achieving first place in his course at TAFE and further, winning an industry prize for his achievements at TAFE. 

Winner-  Safe Work Practices
Winner- Trainee of the Year- Business
Brittney Janetzki
Certificate III in Business
Field Officer – Meagan Thorpe

Brittney commenced her traineeship in June 2016 and has consistently produced work of an excellent quality and accuracy. Brittney is able to work with minimal supervision and has completed her RTO training four months ahead of schedule allowing her to take on more complex tasks that were outside of her usual job expectations.

An excellent recipient of our Safe Practices Award, Brittney has worked with all the departments in the organisation to compile a WHS checklist in regards to methods and suggested improvements. Brittney communicated this to all the employees and communicates safety updates on a regular basis. Brittney also performs any number of tasks that support the WHS team.


School Based Apprentice / Trainee of the Year 2017
Elana Laws
Certificate II in Business
Field Officer – Meagan Thorpe

Elana has been working in the Banking industry while studying for her HSC. Her Host employer has been impressed by the quality of work and her accuracy. Elana requires minimal supervision and even trains new employees, progressing far above expectations. With a sales target of 1 referral per week, Elana consistently achieves 2-3, an outstanding achievement for a school-based trainee. On top of this, Elana has achieved top marks in English in 2016.


1st Year Apprentice- High Achiever Award
Jade Kenny
Certificate III in Landscaping
Field Officer – Jordan Graham- Chubb

Jade commenced in this trade 10 months ago and has displayed such an amazing work ethic and learning commitment that she has received not only high praise from her Host employer but also her RTO teacher. Both have praised not just her work ethic, but the overall outstanding quality of the work she is undertaking. Jade has also achieved marks of 100% in her first few subjects.

2nd Year Apprentice- High Achiever Award
Wasim Khan
Certificate III in Air-Conditioning & Refrigeration
Field Officer – Karen Bates

Wasim commenced his trade 18 months ago and has proven to be an outstanding apprentice. His enthusiasm to learn, both quickly and accurately, has impressed his employer. His knowledge is outstanding for an apprentice at his level and his willingness to undertake any job that his Host needs him urgently to work on without complaint is highly valued in his team. Wasim has also completed 18 months of TAFE with 100% for every single subject.

3rd Year Apprentice- High Achiever Award
Nathan Crawshaw
Certificate III in Engineering Mechanical Trade
Field Officer – Meagan Thorpe

Nathan commenced with 1300apprentice two and a half years ago and has consistently exceeded expectations, his employer stating that Nathan undertakes very difficult work and with little or no errors. Nathan is also committed to expanding his knowledge and experience through extra studies in his own time with a CIV in Fluid Power and a Diploma of Engineering, travelling from the Southern Highlands to Ultimo TAFE 1 day and 2 nights per week – no small feat in expanding his skills.

Special mention awards

Remarkable Apprentices that lift the bar

  • Jarrod Broome – 2nd Year – outstanding efforts with complex component manufacturing
  • Mitchell Clarson  – 2nd year – outstanding results at TAFE
  • Jack Donovan – 2nd Year – undertaking extra classes at night to increase his knowledge and skills base
  • Eaden Lucas – 3rd Year – outstanding results at TAFE
  • Peter Welsh – 2nd Year – 100% attendance and outstanding efforts in TAFE starting 3 months behind the class and still up to date

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