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    Coat of ArmsMedia Release
    Minister for Employment and Small Business and Minister for Training and Skills Development
    The Honourable Shannon Fentiman

    Training awards select South East's best

    Minister for Employment and Small Business and Minister for Training and Skills Development
    The Honourable Shannon Fentiman

    Saturday, July 21, 2018

    Training awards select South East's best

    Blue Dog Training graduate, Alexander Easterby has proven a school-based apprenticeship in Year 10 was a wise choice with a win at last night’s regional Queensland Training Awards final on the Gold Coast.

    Minister for Training and Skills Development Shannon Fentiman congratulated the young carpenter for being awarded the prestigious Harry Hauenschild Apprentice of the Year for South East Queensland.

    “Alexander and the other 10 regional award winners, and all the finalists, deserve to be recognised for their commitment to training,” Ms Fentiman said.

    “The apprentices, trainees, students, teachers, trainers, community organisations and employers nominated this year represent a range of industries that are important to the regional economy.

    “Shining a light on each of their stories demonstrates how training is building careers for individuals and developing skilled workforces for businesses.

    “It is tremendous to see such diverse training courses represented, from graphic design, early childhood education, to fitness, carpentry and engineering in the South East.  

    “With the success of the recent Commonwealth Games that welcomed more than 670,000 visitors, it is terrific to have the Gold Coast Council among the winners, being awarded the title of Large Employer of the Year.

    “With such a complex event, the council partnered with external providers to deliver training to staff based on specific needs, and highlights the city’s investment in staff development opportunities.” 

    The 11 South East Queensland regional winners are:

    1.      Harry Hauenschild Apprentice of the Year: Alexander Easterby from West End (Certificate III in Carpentry at Blue Dog Training)
    2.      Bob Marshman Trainee of the Year: Georgia Handley from Jimboomba (Certificate III in Early Childhood Education and Care at Australian Hospitality Skills Recognition)
    3.      Vocational Student of the Year: Odin Lowsley from Currumbin (Diploma of Graphic Design at TAFE Queensland)
    4.      Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Student of the Year: Tatyana King-Smith from Robina (Certificate III in Fitness and Certificate IV in Fitness at Fit Education)
    5.      School-based Apprentice or Trainee of the Year: Matthew Gardiner from Varsity Lakes (Certificate III in Engineering - Mechanical Trade at TAFE Queensland)
    6.      Equity VET Student of the Year: Corina Macpherson from Labrador (Certificate III in Individual Support [Disability] at FSG Australia)
    7.      VET Teacher or Trainer of the Year: Sara Charleson from Robina (Aurora Training Institute)
    8.      Community Training Initiative of the Year: Running Wild... Youth Conservation Culture Inc on Macleay Island.
    9.      Large Employer of the Year: City of Gold Coast Council
    10.   Medium Employer of the Year: Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary
    11.   Small Employer of the Year: Thom and Ann's Restaurant Deli Pty Ltd in Yarrabilba

    “The 11 winners will now represent the South East Queensland region at the Queensland Training Awards State Gala Dinner to be held on 8 September in Brisbane,” Ms Fentiman said.

    Member for Redlands Kim Richards represented Ms Fentiman at the South East regional finals at Warner Bros. Movie World.

    “Celebrating the fantastic work so many people are doing in Queensland’s training sector is important as the state needs more skilled workers and businesses that support people to build careers in their industry,” she said.

    Thanks to the sponsors of the 2018 South East Queensland regional final:

    Blue Stone Medical, Wynnum Manly Employment and Training Association, Jobs Queensland, Building Industry Training, OSMAC Apprenticeships, All Trades Training, MEGT (Australia) Ltd, MRAEL, The Star Entertainment Group, Redland City Council, TAFE Queensland, Australian Industry Trade College, MultiLink Community Services, BUSY At Work, Gold Coast School of Construction, Australian Retailers Association, Prestige Service Training, Pathways 2 Progress and Workforce Direct.

    For further information on the Queensland Training Awards State Gala Dinner visit

    A full list of the SE regional finalists is available at:

    For further information please contact the Queensland Training Awards via:

    Media contact: Simone Smiles 0427 417 328

                              Bernadette Condren 0417 296 116