Training focus on awards

Overall Apprentice Of The Year For The Hunter Region winner Ben McDonald, who trains with Hunter Valley Training Company and is hosted by Peabody Wambo.Excellence in training was recognised at the 66th annualHunter Regional Apprenticeship & Traineeship Advisory (HRATA) Awards at NEX – Wests City on Friday, June 16.
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NSW Excellence In Non-Traditional Trade Or Vocation For A Female winner Molly Miller, right, with category sponsor UAV air’s Leigh Killian.

The evening saluted the exceptional dedication to the chosen careers of apprentices and trainees from the Hunter Region across 35 vocations, as well as the commitment of their employers in the provision of quality training, thereby ensuring a highly skilled future workforce in the Hunter.

Ben McDonald was named Overall Apprentice of the Year across All Trades.

Phil Darby Memorial Award Winner Maddison Alcorn, who studies at Hunter River High, with employer Hunter New England Health’s Martin Losurdo.

Reece Arday was named Overall Trainee of the Year across All Vocations.

Ben is employed by Hunter Valley Training Company and hosted to Peabody Energy. Reece is employed by Port Stephens Council and trained with TAFE NSW.

“In 2012 I was inspired to follow in my father’s and great grandfather’s footsteps so I applied for an electrical apprenticeship through HVTC,” Ben said.

Currently the Hunter Region employs over 13,000 apprentices and trainees.

“This is a significant contribution to the state’s training needs especially with the current skills shortage,”Regional Manager – Training Services NSW Mrs Rebecca Anthony said.

The keynote speakers for the evening was Mr Russell Young, Director, Training Market Support Services, Training Services NSW, Economic, Skills and Regional Development, NSW Department of Industry.

The awards are made possible by the support and sponsorship of local employers and organisations that epitomise the apprenticeship and trainee system byassisting numerous apprentices and trainees with training and job placement.

“As a region within the state,Hunter always has the highest number of submissions –480 this year – and recognised award categories–37 this year,” HRATA executive committee spokesperson Amber Bibby said.

The overall winners and the winners of NSW Excellence awards move forward to the interview stage for NSW state awards.

NSW Excellence award winners were: Molly Miller (Excellence in Non-Traditional Trade or Vocation for A Female – Employed by AGL Macquarie), Maddison Alcorn (Phil Darby Memorial Award Winner –Studies at Hunter River High School,Employed by Hunter New England Health), Jake Barry (NSW Excellence in Trade Skills –Employed by Origin Energy), Joshua Terrace (NSW ExcellenceTop in Auto Trade Skills – Employed by Komatsu Australia), Jackson Harvey (School-based Apprentice/Trainee of the Year –Studies at Belmont, High, trains TAFE NSW, Employed by HNEH)and Michael Wilkinson (Excellence in STEM –Employed by Programmed Skilled, hosted by Telstra).

Twice as many NSW school projects in government-held seats

Coalition-held seats are in line for twice the number of school infrastructure projects than Labor-held seats under a $2.2 billion program announced by the NSW government, sparking claims of pork-barrelling before the 2019 election.
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The electorate with the most projects is Monaro, held by Deputy Premier and Nationals leader John Barilaro, who faces a fight defending his slender margin of 2.5 per cent.

One of the projects in Monaro is a new special needs school, which Mr Barilaro has been pushing for despite Department of Education advice previously indicating it was not a priority.

TheNSW government announced on Monday that 123 schoolswill be built or upgraded across NSW with $2.2 billion in new funding to address overcrowding fuelled by a surge in student enrolments.

RELATED CONTENTWinners and losers in the NSW budgetNSW Budget 2017: Where’s the money going?The projects are slated to begin within the next two years, meaning they will likely be under way in time for the March 2019 election.

An analysis shows that 56 are in Liberal-held seats and 21 in Nationals-held seats, for a total of 77 projects in Coalition-held electorates.

This compares with 39 in Labor-held seats. Four projects have been announced in Greens-held seats and three in seats held by Independents.

Monaro is in line for seven projects, exceeding even the number earmarked for the Sydney growth areas of Riverstone and Camden, with six each and Ryde, with five.

Labor’s education spokesman Jihad Dib accused the government of “playing politics” with children’s education.

“Class places should be allocated on a needs basis – such as those areas that are undergoing the greatest growth – not in the electorates where the Liberals and their junior partner are under the greatest threat,” he said.

But Education Minister Rob Stokes said the accusation was “ridiculous”.

“Clearly the opposition doesn’t understand that the parties in government represent more electorates with more schools, more people and more growth – hence more school projects,” he said.

Mr Stokes said the Coalition held electorates in many of the state’s high-growth areas “including new subdivisions and urban renewal areas”.

“Demographic projections in these areas confirm the need for more investment in education infrastructure in these areas,” he said.

He said Monaro needed to be “assessed in context”.

“One of these schools is a School for Specific Purposes while a number of other upgrade projects are small in scope,” he said. “Queanbeyan has a growing population due to its proximity to Canberra.”

Mr Barilaro said Monaro was “often overlooked when it comes to establishing specialist services”.

“For some time now, I have been lobbying the NSW government to build a School for Special Purpose (SSP) in Queanbeyan with specially designed programs that meet the requirements of children with a disability,” he said.

“Currently we have no such facility in the Monaro for special needs school students.”

Innovation and flexibility at work

From left to right, Forsythes Training’s Mark Maguire, Di Sweeney, Chad White, Tracey Saggus and Julie Carroll.Innovation and flexibility have helped HRATA Awards platinum sponsorForsythes Training to skill many of the region’s leading businesses for greater success, according to CEO Chad White.
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Mr White said the registered training organisation has introduced new methods of delivery and student support as well as new services to an expanding range of businesses and industry sectors.

An increasing number of participants complete courses via e-learning or combination of workshops and online delivery. A student portal combined with ongoing online support has improved training effectiveness and accessibility.

“We’ve introduced special support days at our offices so clients use our equipment and have additional access to trainers,” Mr White said.

Another innovation has been the establishment of Forsythes Careers Institute to help people looking to get into the workforce to have the right, job-ready skills.

“Our in-depth understanding of the local labour market and the needs of business has seen the Institute asked by industry and government to develop a number of pre-employment training programs,” he said.

Those include a pre-employment program for Indigeneous people to work on the multi-billion dollar RAAF expansion project. A programthe Stockland Greenhills redevelopment. Another is planned for the Cessnock Gaol development as well as other infrastructure projects. An industry-first partnership with WorkSkills has produced pre-employment programs for people seeking customer engagement roles.

Mr White said one thing that hasn’t changed is Forsythes Training’s use of expert trainers and its constant revision of courses to meet the latest requirements and industry needs.

“Our platinum support for the HRATA Awards is part of more than a decade-long commitment to advancing the highest quality skills training in the Hunter,” fellow Forsythes Training director Julie Carroll said.

Forsythes sponsored the Overall Trainee of the Year Award, won by Reece Arday.

What does it mean, this house of cards?

Deep Meaning: A bloke builds a house of cards in a Newcastle Permanent ad. We couldn’t help but notice one of Newcastle Permanent’s latest advertisements.
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Guess that’s the whole idea of advertising. Itmakes you notice it.

As you can see, this ad features a bloke building a house of cards.

Let us, for a moment or two, put on our Gruen Transfer hat. Indulge us while we analyse this ad. Analysing ads is fun. Try it some time.

So what exactly is going on here? Is this ad saying that this bloke has hismortgage sorted with the Perm, so he can relax and play frivolous games?

Let us put on our reverse psychology hat for a second. Is the ad saying that if you get a loan with the Perm, your life won’t be like a house of cards?

It could be saying that the Perm is a safeinstitution and would never be a house of cards (phew!).

Perhaps it’s saying that the economy could be considered a house of cards (think the global financial crisis), but if your savings arewith the Perm you’ll be protected?

Let us know your thoughts at [email protected]南京夜网.au on the Perm ad, or other ads that fascinate, bamboozle or interest you.

The Power of Flubber Anti-gravity is an energy source that powers UFOs in science fiction.

The Herald rana story online todayabout the future of energy. The story reportsBloomberg New Energy Finance sayingsolar and wind willdominate the future of electricity. The company was talking around the year 2040.

The Herald ran an online poll on this issue. We asked, what energy source will be most prominent in future?

As we wrote this piece, solar was in the lead with 34per cent of the vote, followed by coal with 29 per cent. Nuclear received 20per cent of the vote. Wind got a measly 4 per cent.

But in an interesting turn of events,flubber received 4 per cent of the vote. For those who don’t know (or forget), Flubber was a 1997 filmstarring Robin Williams as a professordeveloping a new energy source. This energy source was called flubber, because it was “flying rubber”.

Also in our poll, anti-gravity received almost 1 per cent of the vote. Anti-gravity is supposed to be the energy source that powers UFOs.

Nick Cook, whowas aviation editor ofJane’s Defence Weekly, wrote about anti-gravity in his book The Hunt for Zero Point. We’re not sure if anti-gravity is a thing…there’s more than a touch of sci-fi about it. But it sounds a lot more advanced than burning coal.

In hundreds of years, we wonder how humanity will look back on the burning of coal? If humanity is still around, that is.

Best Drop of Tooheys OldMaitland’s Brian Donne tells us there’s an event called The Great Wheelbarrow Race, which is held each year from Mareeba to Chillagoe in Queensland.

Held over three days and covering about 150 kilometres, it honours the pioneers of the gold rush days.

“The first day ended at Dimbulah about 60 kilometres from Mareeba. The hotel there had the best drop of Tooheys Old I have ever tasted – and it was on tap. Maybe it was because of the effort required to get to Dimbulah, but it certainly was worth the effort.”

Peter from Swansea sent us this image of his five-ex beer.

Speaking of Queensland beer,Peter from Swansea asked us: “Have you ever seen a five-xcan of beer (as opposed to a four-ex beer)?

“When I was in Queensland years ago, four-ex brought it out becauseQueenslandwon State of Origin five times. I bought a couple of cartons. I’ve got two cans left.”

Peter saidthe beer had won him quite a few bets over the years against people who couldn’t believe five-ex existed.

Wines match offbeat saga

UNIQUE: Christian Canute is making offbeat varietals that reflect a fascinating family story.THE Barossa wines Christian Canute makes for the Rusden brand have unconventional names like Black Guts, Chookshed, Poco Loco, Ripper Creek, Full Circle and Good Shepherd and trace an intriguing family saga.
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The names fit because for more than a decade the portfolio has featured such offbeat varieties as zinfandel, malbec, cinsault, chenin blanc and mataro (aka mourvedre) as well as the familiar Barossa standards of shiraz, cabernet sauvignon and grenache.

The Rusden story begansimplyin1979 with teachers Dennis and Christine Canute buying 16 hectares of Vine Vale land as a hobby farm on which they could relax with their kids.The relaxation didn’t materialise because the land had a rundown vineyard that challenged Christine’s background as a fifth-generation member of a pioneer Barossa wine family.

She quit her school job to devote herself and the family to restoring the vineyard and today Rusden has 13 hectares of hand-tended vines that produce an annual grape crush of 80 to 100 tonnes processed in a winery run by Christian.

The zinfandel that Christian first made in 2005 is called Chookshed because that was where the vines were planted.Ripper Creeks are so named because they reprise the “ripper” 1960s and 1970s Barossa shiraz-cabernet blends, the Poco Loco grenache-cinsault-matarorosés relate to the sometimes crazy antics ofChristian and wife Amy’s four children.

The Full Circle mataro is so named because 80-year-old vines of that variety were ripped out and burnt in the 1970s by previous owners only to be replanted 20 years later by the Canutes.

The Drifts and grenache-shiraz-mataro, first made in 2005, is named for the white sand over clay on which the Canute vines grow. The name also recalls the vine destruction undone by Dennis, Christine and Christian as they spent months kneeling in the sand to replant grenache and shiraz.

Black Guts dates back to 1994 when Dennis Canute and his teacher pal Russell Gehling teamed up to make a big shiraz for consumption by their families and other locals. It earned the nickname “Black Guts” – and the tag went on the bottles.

Then Russell, the Rus on the label, dropped out and big wineries cut prices for the grapes the Canutes sold them – propelling Dennis, Christine and son Christian into commercial winemaking for their Rusden brand.

In 1997 Christian made the first Rusden wines and he cautiously labelled the former Black Guts “Barossa Shiraz”. It caused such a storm of protest from customers that the original name was restored next vintage.