Sercombe’s maturity and focus key in Concrete Industry Apprentice of the Year win

Concrete Apprentice of the Year 2021 Max Sercombe (third from right) with the BCITO team, from left: Mike McFarlane, Glenn Duncan, Greg Durkin, Ben Hilder and chief executive Jason Hungerford.

Maxwell Sercombe of HEB Construction has been presented with the 2021 Concrete Industry Apprentice of the Year award by Concrete NZ and the BCITO, a business unit of Te Pukenga Work Based Learning Ltd.

The pandemic greatly impacted the construction sector and hospitality industry, leading to multiple postponements of Concrete NZ’s conference, at which the Concrete Industry Apprentice of the Year is traditionally acknowledged.

As such, Sercombe was joined by his HEB Construction colleagues and extended family, along with the Concrete NZ and BCITO teams, at a recent function in Wellington dedicated to celebrating his achievements.

In congratulating Sercombe, Concrete NZ chief executive Rob Gaimster noted that the quality of entrants was exceptional.

He said entrants included apprentices from precast manufacture, concrete placing and finishing, concrete production and concrete construction, making the judging process more challenging than is normally the case.

“Maxwell’s maturity and focus helped to elevate him above other entrants, and he deserves applause for his enthusiasm, dedication and thirst for knowledge,” Gaimster said.

“He has shown tremendous professional growth over recent years which, combined with his outstanding personal qualities, make Maxwell a worthy recipient of the award.”

BCITO director Jason Hungerford expressed similar sentiments in praising Maxwell’s hard mahi (work) and achievements to date, also noting that the function was an opportunity to celebrate with the people that have supported him on his learning journey.

“In conjunction with industry associations, apprentice awards are held each year across all BCITO trades,” Hungerford said.

“For me, these awards are a culmination of everything we’re about at the BCITO — training, learning, and rewarding excellence, and they reflect what we want everyone training in the construction sector to aspire to! Well done, Maxwell.”

HEB Construction structures training manager Raymond Puhara congratulated Sercombe on his achievement, noting that it was obvious from the start that he was a go getter, punctual and reliable.

“Max gives his all in whatever he does, and is definitely one of our future leaders,” Puhara said.

The Concrete Industry Apprentice of the Year award has gained great momentum since its inception in 2016, and is an important tool to celebrate apprentice success, the importance of trade training, and the value of employer and family support.

“Over recent years, the number of those enrolled in BCITO qualifications has increased dramatically, hitting 20,000 in 2021,” Gaimster noted.

“Within this environment of trade training growth, the Concrete Industry Apprentice of the Year award highlights the fantastic opportunities available in the concrete industry for those contemplating a career in construction.”

The award was open to all those enrolled in, or who had recently completed, one of the BCITO concrete apprenticeships.

The Concrete Industry Apprentice of the Year award was made possible thanks to major sponsors Concrete NZ and the BCITO.

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