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NSW shines at 2023 Australian Training Awards

NSW Department of Education 2 mins read

The quality of the NSW vocational education and training system (VET) was on show with eight accolades at the 30th Australian Training Awards in Hobart last night.

The national awards represent the pinnacle in VET for individuals, businesses, and registered training organisations.

This year saw two young women from NSW, Bridie Searle and Molly Smith, celebrated for excellence in their traineeship or apprenticeship.

2023’s Trainee of the Year was awarded to Bridie who now manages million-dollar maritime projects with Thales Australia after completing her Certificate IV in Project Management Practice.

“I’ve always been a hands-on learner. The balance of theory and practical work offers an unmatched training program – it was pivotal to my success,” Bridie said.

“When I reflect on the person and professional I’ve become during this traineeship, it fills me with pride. It’s been fantastic and I’ve picked up so many skills that are transferable across multiple roles and industries.”

Molly was named the runner up in the Australian School-based Apprentice or Trainee of the Year category after she was inspired to undertake her Certificate III in Health Services Assistance following an illness in the family.

“My traineeship lets me study something I’m passionate about, but it’s also given me a place where I feel at home. Nursing has had a massive impact on my life. I’ve gained confidence, valuable skills, and a sense of belonging – I’m excited about my future,” Molly said.

The awards also saw NSW dominate in the Australian Apprenticeships – Employer Award category with Komatsu, a global leader in manufacturing, innovation, technology, and people development, taking out the top award.

Electrical contracting company, Kerfoot, won the silver award, with Peter Warren Automotive rounding out the category with bronze.

Minister for Skills, TAFE and Tertiary Education, Steve Whan, attended the ceremony and said he hoped more people were inspired to explore VET pathways.

“Our winners and finalists proudly represent the next generation of VET-skilled workforce. I congratulate them on their dedication to their trades and thank them for their service to the community,” Minister Whan said.

“It is great to see the number of young women excelling in their training, as well as a number from regional NSW.”

This year’s finalists were chosen from each state and territory’s training awards, with NSW winners representing 10 of the 16 categories at the Australian Training Awards.

In NSW alone, there are more than one million people taking on training each year in a wide range of industries that underpin our everyday lives.

Other award recipients from New South Wales include:

  • Large Employer of the Year (Silver): Transdev Australasia
  • School Pathways to VET Award (Silver): CathWest Innovation College
  • Innovation in VET Award (Bronze): St John XXIII Catholic College



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