MORE than 250 people filled Longerenong College’s main hall on Friday night to celebrate the achievements of some of the Wimmera’s most outstanding apprentices and trainees.
Sixty trainees and apprentices working in a diverse range of fields throughout the region’s six shires were nominated for a WorkCo award by their host employers this year.
Of those, there were 29 finalists in seven categories, and two overall awards.
Wes Davidson Real Estate sales assistant Tyler Neville was named Trainee of the Year and Samuel Eastwood of Horsham Hydraulics won Apprentice of the Year.
Both were presented with a trophy, a certificate and a $1000 cheque.
Mr Neville received his real estate licence at the age of 20 after completing his three-year traineeship in Property Services Real Estate in two years.
Mr Eastwood completed two engineering qualifications: in mechanical trade and fabrication.
He plans to continue his studies, this time with a certificate in frontline business management.
Among the other winners on the night were Horsham College’s Sophie Matthews for Best Trainee at Certificate II and III level.
The best trainee at Certificate IV and Diploma level was Wimmera Health Care Group’s Ellie Rook.
Ashleigh Harris of Bourke’s Butchery in Birchip was the Best First Year Apprentice, while Horsham Rural City Council’s Timothy McDonald was Best Second Year Apprentice.
Justin Williams of CHS Group Australia was awarded Best Third Year Apprentice, while Norton Motor Group’s Mark Riedl was Best Fourth Year Apprentice.
Balmoral Community College Year 12 student and Cafe Chickpea employee Sheree Mutch was named Best School-Based Apprentice.
Nominees Ian Anderson of Horsham Motor Company and Woodbine’s Claire Huebner were each awarded Leadership Wimmera Scholarships.
The scholarships were aimed at fostering regional leadership in the Wimmera, Grampians and Mallee regions and sponsored by the Warracknabeal Rotary Club, Woodbine and Des Lardner Organic.