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Top building apprentice in Upper South Island announced

Media release: 5 September 2014

Top building apprentice in Upper South Island announced

Tasman carpentry apprentice Jesse Walker has been named the Upper South Island Registered Master Builders Carters 2014 Apprentice of the Year.

The 22 year old, employed by Coman Construction in Nelson and trained through the BCITO, impressed judges who say his product knowledge was exceptional and he demonstrated good all-round practical skills.

“Jesse displayed great passion and maturity in his craft and trade for someone so young. He presented himself very well in both manner and dress, and we were impressed with his respect for the company he works for.”

Jesse was awarded an array of prizes, including his choice of either a study grant to the value of $2,000 or $2,000 to spend at Carters and a place at an Outward Bound Leadership Programme, as well as the sought-after title of Upper South Island Registered Master Builders Carters 2014 Apprentice of the Year.

Second place in the Upper South Island was awarded to Shaun Campbell, 19, of Nelson, employed by Inhaus Developments, while third place went to Richard Anderson, 21, of Blenheim, employed by D M Building.

The results were announced at an awards evening at Giesen Sports & Events Centre in Blenheim on Thursday 4 September.

Registered Master Builders acting chief executive Brendon Ward says it is gratifying to see a strong group of contenders putting themselves forward to be judged against their peers at this year’s Apprentice of the Year competition.

“Apprentices who are willing to stand up and strive to be the best they can be demonstrate the excellent talent coming through our building and construction industry. The builders who take on those apprentices should also be praised for their contribution to the growth and succession of the sector.”

BCITO chief executive Ruma Karaitiana says Apprentice of the Year is a great way of encouraging best practice among young builders.

“We are right behind initiatives that provide a benchmark for builders and encourage the young ones to work to the highest standard possible. The competition is an opportunity for apprentices to stand out from their peers and really put their skills to the test.”

Jesse will now go on to compete against the winners from eight other regions at the national competition in Auckland where each apprentice will undergo a 45-minute interview with the national judging panel.

Finalists will then compete in a practical carpentry challenge where each apprentice will be tasked with completing a small building project, to be gifted to local charities on completion. The practical challenge will take place at The Cloud on Friday 17 October and will be open to the public.
The winner of the Registered Master Builders Carters 2014 Apprentice of the Year will then be announced at an awards dinner at The Cloud.

Apprentices, employers and young people aspiring to be a part of the construction industry are encouraged to join the Facebook page: and for more information visit

Owned by the Registered Master Builders Association, the Apprentice of the Year competition is made possible thanks to principal sponsor Carters, the Building and Construction Industry Training Organisation (BCITO), and supporting sponsor the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE).


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