Young carpentry apprentices all over the country are preparing to nail another challenge as they compete in the Registered Master Builders Apprentice of the Year competition, in association with Carters.
The competition is run by industry leaders Carters, the Building and Construction Industry Training Organisation (BCITO), Registered Master Builders Federation (RMBF) and the Department of Building and Housing.
It is staged in 10 regions around New Zealand, and each regional winner will head to Wellington to compete for the national title in October.
A record 135 entries have been received in the 2008 competition, which has experienced huge growth since starting as a Wellington-based contest in 2004.
BCITO chief executive Ruma Karaitiana says the introduction of a national title last year was a huge success. He says the BCITO is pleased to continue supporting the Apprentice of the Year competition as part of its ongoing commitment to celebrate excellence among apprentices and raise awareness of career opportunities in the industry.
“There are currently more than 9000 carpentry apprentices training with the BCITO, and more than 880 people have already achieved a National Certificate this year,” Mr Karaitiana says.
“The Apprentice of the Year awards are an important and valued initiative which recognise the skills and determination required to complete an apprenticeship.”
In the coming weeks, entrants in the competition will be interviewed by a judging panel made up of representatives from Registered Master Builders, the BCITO and Carters.
Up to 10 finalists will be selected from each region, and the judging panel will make a visit to each finalist’s building site to determine regional winners.
The 10 regional winners will be announced at awards evenings around the country in September and October before gathering in Wellington to compete for the national Apprentice of the Year title on October 21 and 22.
The Apprentice of the Year competition is being run in 10 regions this year — Northern, Auckland, Waikato, Bay of Plenty, East Coast, Central North Island, Wellington, Upper South Island, Central South Island and Southern.
The winner of each regional competition and up to three guests will be brought to Wellington in October to take part in the national competition. The winner of the national Apprentice of the Year title will be announced at an awards evening following national judging.
Regional winners also receive a prize package which includes:
• participation in a specialist Outward Bound Leadership Programme tailored for Apprentice of the Year winners (value up to $2500), and
• a scholarship towards completion of study or postgraduate study in any construction or building course (value up to $2000).
Regional place-getters receive prize packs from Carters, including tools and products from Hitachi, Stanley, Irwin Industrial Tools and Wholesafe, and branded merchandise from the BCITO.
All entrants in the Apprentice of the Year competition also receive an apprenticeship membership to the Registered Master Builders Federation for one year.