An adult apprenticeship has helped labourer Ricky James Slater enhance his opportunities in the construction trade by becoming a qualified carpenter.
Ricky decided to become a ‘chippy’ at the age of 30 and worked diligently to complete a Certificate III in carpentry in just over 18 months.
“I took a fair bit of interest in it, so it went pretty well,” he said. “It was a big relief to get down that road and complete the apprenticeship.”
Ricky was helped through his course by BUSY At Work, who informed him of everything he needed to get started, discussed the benefits of adult apprenticeships and encouraged his existing employer to take him on.
Wendy Powell, senior industry training consultant at BUSY At Work, said Ricky was extremely dedicated to getting his qualification.
“He was the sort of guy who, when everybody else had finished for the day and might go to the tavern for a few beverages, he’d go home and complete a few modules so that he could get through them quicker,” she explained.
“He did an amazing job. A lot of people don’t get through it as quick as Ricky did. He put in a lot of extra personal time and it really made a huge difference.”
Taking on an adult apprenticeship can be a financial challenge, but there are incentives and support available to ease the process for both the apprentice and their employer.
Because Ricky was training in a trade where there is a skills shortage, he received money under the Supporting Australian Adult Apprentices scheme.
Furthermore, the company that he works for also received a payment, as it is located in a rural and regional area.
Ricky said the experience was extremely positive and now his company is looking to take on more apprentices in the future.
“I was the first apprenticeship that they used,” he stated. “But, I think they are going to get a new apprentice working on the site next year.”