Fri 29 Sep 2017

Academy Team in Tune

They arrived from different Taranaki secondary schools but left with the same message.

Matt Hooker and Jaron Coombe both say the Trades Academy work they have completed at WITT this year has been invaluable.

Matt and Jaron enrolled for an automotive course as members of the strongest group of students to have come under the eye of long-serving tutor Nigel Goble.

“I haven’t seen better in 20 years,” he said.  They would arrive at 8.30am for a 9am start, return early from lunch and want to carry on when we had finished.’’

The dedication is reflected in the fact two of the 13 who completed the course have already obtained apprenticeships, two have enrolled at WITT full time and three are actively looking for work, and if they don’t get it they plan to return to enrol in another WITT course.

Those are the sort of results WITT and schools hope to achieve through the pathway programmes which provide students with different learning opportunities.

Matt, from Coastal High School, was named top student in the course and said he already had work at Auto Innovations in Strandon and would like to get an apprenticeship.

“The time at WITT has been valuable and I have picked up a lot of knowledge – it’s a lot more practical than you think.’’

Jaron, who like Matt walked away with a bucket of cleaning equipment to pamper someone’s car after being named most improved automotive student, said he arrived from Francis Douglas Memorial College with little automotive knowledge, but had learnt a lot. His goals for 2018 including getting more work experience.

Dozens of secondary school students throughout Taranaki spend a day a week for 30 weeks at WITT to prepare them for work or further study and they gathered on Thursday and Friday to celebrate the end of their programme for 2017. The Trades Academy is delivered through Secondary Tertiary Pathways.

Students to collect special awards were:

Electrical: Top Student Ollie Lovell, Most Improved Lachlan Young.  Automotive: Top Student Mathew Hooker, Most Improved Jaron Coombe. Welding: Top Student Ben Fitzgibbon, Most Improved Kingston Simpson. Art and Design: Top Student Lucy Cruden, Giving It a Go! Jacob Andrews. Sport and Fitness: Top Students Brandi Dakin-Spershott and Ben Gooch-Wright, Most Improved Te Uira Hohaia. Hairdressing:               Top Student Shicaela Kane, Most Improved: Monique Rowe. Beauty and Makeup:  Top Student Savannah Hislop, Most Improved Jade Austin. Cookery Top Students Jesse Gudopp and Lucy Stinson, Most Improved Joseph Clarke. Restaurant Service Top students, Renzyl Carranza, Siteri Naumotu and     Megan  Richards, Most Improved Cian Howarth and Caleb Glover. Beauty and Makeup: Top Student    Angel Blackett, Most Improved  Kate Malmo.

Picture: Jaron (left) and Matt, pictured with tutor Nigel Goble.