- Thirteen exceptional individuals and organisations named as winners at the WA Training Awards 2022
- South Metropolitan TAFE awarded WA Large Training Provider of the Year 2022
- Finalists showcase excellence in the vocational education and training sector
- Celebrating training and its role in supporting a strong WA economy
The Western Australian training sector's brightest stars have been celebrated at the WA Training Awards 2022 at Crown Perth, with eight individuals and five organisations announced as this year's winners.
Now in their 28th year, the awards recognise the outstanding achievements of apprentices, trainees, employers and training organisations, with individual winners receiving $3,000 that they can use to further their training or kick-start their career.
There was a surge in applications for the 2022 awards following last year's record number of student enrolments in government-funded Vocation Education and Training (VET) courses.
South Metropolitan TAFE was named as WA Large Training Provider of the Year 2022, and was among five organisation winners that were recognised as industry leaders and important contributors to the work to build a pipeline of skilled local workers.
WA Apprentice of the Year 2022 Megan Hazelden (Pinjarra) was celebrated for being an ambassador for her industry and readily presenting at schools about the benefits and opportunities available through apprenticeships.
After growing up on a farm and developing an appreciation for all things mechanical, Megan's passion for working on machines led her to study a Certificate III in Engineering through South Metropolitan TAFE.
Now a qualified mechanical fitter working for Alcoa at their Wagerup Refinery, Megan wants to break down barriers and pave a way for women to start apprenticeships in non-traditional trades.
WA Trainer of the Year 2022 Stephen Delaney (Bibra Lake), who is a painting lecturer at MPA Skills, was acknowledged for adapting and improving his teaching style to navigate modern-day challenges.
Stephen is a professional artist and committed to life-long learning. He is studying a Diploma in Art Therapy, to further support at-risk students.
The 2022 WA Training Awards are made possible thanks to continuing support from the State Training Board, MEGT, Apprenticeship Support Australia powered by CCIWA, Construction Training Fund, the Electrical and Communications Association of Western Australia, Maxima and the Training Accreditation Council WA.
The winners could go on to represent Western Australia at the Australian Training Awards in Adelaide, on Friday 18 November, 2022.
Comments attributed to Acting Education and Training Minister Rita Saffioti:
"The WA Training Awards are an opportunity to shine a light on the brightest stars in the VET sector, showcasing excellence and outstanding achievement.
"The McGowan Government has invested heavily in training to keep WA's economy strong and give all Western Australians the opportunity to grow their dream career.
"Congratulations to all of the 2022 winners, who are to be commended for their dedication to their vocational training and being exemplary ambassadors for WA's VET sector."
Media contact: Phoebe Wearne 0408 784 145 or 6552 5700
WA Training Awards 2022 winner profiles
WA Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Student of the Year 2022
Wayne Ryder, Byford
From school captain to captain of his football team, Wayne has paved the way for Aboriginal men walking a similar journey. One of his proudest achievements was creating the Waakal Moort Kaadadjiny Festival, a health and wellbeing festival for at-risk Aboriginal people.
Wayne began working for Palmerston Association as a Community Aboriginal Worker, supporting individuals affected by drugs and alcohol following his lived experience. He later won a scholarship to study a Diploma of Leadership and Management with the Australian Institute of Management.
WA Apprentice of the Year 2022
Megan Hazelden, Pinjarra
Growing up on a farm watching her parents work on machinery, Megan knew she wanted to become a mechanic.
Now completing a Certificate III in Engineering, she is well on her way to reaching her goal of becoming a Mechanical Fitter at Wagerup Refinery.
Throughout her apprenticeship, Megan has had the opportunity to represent women in the industry, presenting at schools and student career nights about career opportunities.
Winning South Metropolitan TAFE's Apprentice of the Year 2021 gave her the confidence to encourage women to apply for an apprenticeship in mechanical fitting.
WA Cultural Diversity Training Award 2022
Feng Yang, Nedlands
A birthday wish from Feng's daughter for better lunches to take to school changed Feng's life, and began his journey into a new and exciting career. After moving to Australia from China and wanting to make his daughter proud while learning more about nutrition, Feng enrolled in a Certificate III in Commercial Cookery at South Metropolitan TAFE.
Aside from mastering different cuisines, Feng's communication skills have improved, his daughter's lunch box is the most popular at school and Feng is working towards his goal of becoming a chef.
WA International Student of the Year 2022
Yu-Chien (Eva) Cho, Cannington
It was the interactive learning environment in the training restaurant at South Metropolitan TAFE that captured Eva's attention and cemented her decision to study a Diploma of Hospitality Management.
Eva's career pathway started in Taiwan, but since moving to Perth, she has completed a Diploma and is now studying towards the Advanced Diploma of Hospitality Management.
Eva says her oral and written communication skills have improved immensely and she has gained an appreciation of working with students from other cultures.
WA School-based Apprentice of the Year 2022
Sophia Pitaro, Kardinya
Driven to gain as much experience as she can while attending high school, Sophia has already completed Certificates in Events Management, Tourism and Skills for Work and Vocational Pathways.
Now embarking on a traineeship through North Metropolitan TAFE, Sophia is completing a Certificate III in Sport and Recreation and has completed qualifications including her First Aid, Lifeguard and CPR Certificates while gaining on-the-job experience with BlueFit - Belmont Oasis Leisure Centre.
WA Trainee of the Year 2022
Brittany-Leigh Wragg, Mandurah
Being one of the first students to study a Certificate III in Defence Industry Pathways Program, Brittany cites the unwavering support from the team at South Metropolitan TAFE and Programmed Training Services that helped her feel confident about her chosen career pathway in a male-dominated industry.
Brittany-Leigh has sampled different job roles while undertaking work placement rotations and gained real-life experience, all while building up a network of industry contacts. She hopes to begin an apprenticeship in defence on completion of her traineeship.
WA Trainer of the Year 2022
Stephen Delaney, Bibra Lake, MPA Skills
For 20 years, Stephen has delivered training to his students with a pastoral and holistic approach. He readily participates in training to upskill, as well as adapting and improving his teaching style to navigate modern-day challenges.
At MPA Skills Painting and Plumbing, Stephen's passion is training pre-apprentices which he says is "challenging and rewarding" but where he can make the biggest impact. Stephen did not think he would be training for as long as he has been, but two decades later, he is as passionate as ever and loves making a difference in people's lives.
Stephen says training students is a privilege. Imparting confidence, support and knowledge to pre-apprentices is what he finds the most rewarding. He is responsible for leading landmark art projects around Perth for which his pre-apprentices have proudly completed, including the Salvos Store in Maylands and the Morley City Library.
WA Vocational Student of the Year 2022
Caitlin Bezuidenhout, Chidlow
Inspired after visiting her nanna at an aged-care facility, nine-year-old Caitlin was determined to make a positive change in the industry.
Still at school, Caitlin is completing her Certificate IV in Preparation for Health and Nursing studies through Health Science Hub and her Certificate III in Individual Support (Ageing) through Australian Medical Association WA.
Through her work placement with Baptistcare, Caitlin has been able to gain hands-on experience and is passionate about creating positive energy in her workplace.
WA Small Employer of the Year 2022
Starting with just four staff, Matera Electrical has grown to over 90 employees, aiming for excellence in safety standards and high-quality work within the construction and oil and gas industries.
With roughly 80 per cent of employees actively engaged in training, and spending on average 200 hours per month in training, the company is committed to a team-focused approach, fostering positive change and prioritising communication and training to ensure staff are fully engaged and equipped for superior results.
WA Large Employer of the Year 2022
Byrnecut is one of the world's leading underground contract miners with over 3,800 employees. Byrnecut's training programs undergo continuous improvement, with input from experienced operators and management to ensure quality learning opportunities.
With 21 per cent of employees undertaking a traineeship or apprenticeship within WA, Byrnecut are committed to world-class training and development, individualised learning plans, unlimited support and access to thousands of resources and networks to set employees up for successful, long-term careers with the company.
WA Industry Collaboration Award 2022
Making Tracks (Department of Justice)
Making Tracks is a collaborative industry training and employment network of partnerships for prisoners across WA to ensure VET delivery within prisons is relevant and appropriate to the needs of both the prisoners engaged in training and the businesses that go on to employ them.
Through collaboration with employers in key industries, the program reduces the stigma ex-prisoners face when seeking employment, while meeting the needs of the labour market, contributing to the economy and reducing reoffending.
Small Training Provider of the Year 2022
Taylorweir International School of Hairdressing
Taylorweir International School of Hairdressing (Taylorweir) is the longest established private hairdressing RTO in WA. The training delivery focuses on a client-driven approach, ensuring that students achieve their best outcomes with support from their employers and the outstanding teaching skills of the organisation's trainers.
With over 480 enrolled students, Taylorweir's 25-year journey continues to be one of learning, growth and change which has allowed it to maintain its position as the leader of hairdressing and barbering education in Australia.
Large Training Provider of the Year 2022
South Metropolitan TAFE
South Metropolitan TAFE is one of WA's most diverse training providers. The college offers more than 340 qualifications, from foundation courses to apprenticeships and traineeships, to advanced diplomas and skill sets. The college is dedicated to working collaboratively with industry, ensuring their partnerships support economic and community development.
With 12 campuses throughout the southern corridor, including major campuses in Bentley, Carlisle, Fremantle, Murdoch, Rockingham, Thornlie and Mandurah, South Metropolitan TAFE has more than 28,000 students across their Perth campuses, as well as offshore students in a number of countries.