Over 30 students were recognised at Kangan Institute’s Apprentice and Industry Awards, held at Aerial South Wharf last Thursday night. The Minister for Skills and Training, Gayle Tierney, was among the 350 guests to attend the event.
At the awards night, winning apprentices were from a range of disciplines across TAFE courses, including automotive, construction, engineering, electrical, hairdressing, bakery and commercial cookery.
The Apprentice of the Year Award went to Hairdressing student, Sharne Rizzo, of Ivanhoe, from Joey Scandizzo Salon in South Yarra.
“To win this award has been absolutely incredible. I’m so, so excited and humbled by it. I’d like to thank my teachers, employers and family - everyone who’s supported me,” she said.
Sharne has always had a passion for hairdressing and learning different styles, describing her apprenticeship at Kangan Institute of TAFE as “the best thing I’ve ever done”. She has since gone on to win a number of training awards in hairdressing, including Student of the Year at Hair Expo 2017 and Australian Apprentice of the Year in the same year.
“Working with Kangan Institute has definitely helped me to be where I want to be. My teachers have been fantastic. I wouldn’t want to work with anyone else!” she said. “It’s the best place I could’ve possibly gone.”
Sharne is very enthusiastic about entering more competitions “to push me to be better. It’s a very rewarding industry when you try hard.” As for one of the best parts of her job? “You make people feel good about themselves!”
Awards nights like Kangan Institute’s Apprentice and Industry Awards not only recognise the huge effort that students put into their studies, but also the importance of both our industry partners and training providers.
It is these ongoing relationships that allow such institutions to provide apprenticeships and collaborate with industry to ensure our vocational education is relevant to student needs.
“Events like tonight are so important for celebrating the hard work, innovation and passion that has resulted in so many great success stories for our students. It’s also important for recognising our industry partnerships and the time and effort employers invest in our apprentices,” said Kangan Institute CEO Trevor Schwenke.
Other awards night winners for the evening include: