Apprenticeships ‘open doors’
The reward of transforming blank canvases into bright and engaging visual displays for his clients is why Wollongong’s Josh Tunbridge loves sign-writing.
“We manage the production process from the client walking in the door to installing the finished product which is the best part about sign-writing,” Josh said.
The 29-year-old completed a Certificate III in Off-Site Construction (Sign Writing/Computer Operations) in 2008 through TAFE NSW – Illawarra Institute while employed with his father’s business, Tunbridge Designs.
Josh remains employed with the family business which he plans to own in the future when his father retires.
“Not only do I like the fact that my apprenticeship has given me a career that I love, but the bonuses – like WorldSkills - have been amazing,” he said.
“The WorldSkills experience has helped me focus on the importance of teamwork and leadership skills and that has made me a better tradesman.
“And so many doors have been opened including travel to the UK.”
Josh won a gold medal at the 2008 WorldSkills Australia National Competition, and went on to receive the BBM Scholarship allowing him to travel to the UK for a two-week teamwork and leadership course.
“My advice to young people thinking about starting an Australian Apprenticeship would be ‘go for it’,” he said.
“Grab hold of it with both hands and give it a crack.
“It is something that is very rewarding and at the end of the day you get a qualification that you can use to boost your career and develop new opportunities to just about wherever you like.”