Representatives from SuniTAFE and Mildura Truck Centre gathered yesterday for a morning tea to celebrate apprentice Thomas Bevan.
Tom was awarded a gold medal at the WorldSkills Australian Championships last month in the Heavy Vehicle Mechanics category.
The gold medallist is employed by local business Mildura Truck Centre as an apprentice while he completes Certificate III in Heavy Commercial Vehicle Mechanical Technology (AUR31120) at SuniTAFE.
The morning tea was a celebration of his efforts and recognition of the contributions both organisations have made to get him here.
Tom spent months training for the competition. He was dedicated to perfecting the necessary skills for the competition.
“We went down to Melbourne for a training camp at the start of June where we worked on the things I was struggling with at the time,” Tom said.
“What I was struggling with most was engine measurement and that ended up being the thing I scored highest in, so it was really, really valuable to focus on that when we went down there.”
Tom credits his SuniTAFE training for giving him the skills he needed to enter the competition.
“Our program at SuniTAFE was very involved. It isn’t just based on one certain area or skillset. It is across the board. You learn a fair bit about everything. A little about tractors, road transport, and agriculture,” Tom said.
“Also, everything is really involved and the books have so many different practical tasks in the one book so you do a bit of everything which is beneficial.”
Mildura Truck Centre Service Manager Matthew Morello, who works alongside Tom, attended the morning tea yesterday.
“It’s pretty exciting to have one of our apprentices win this competition. We’ve never had anybody reach this level, and its just a true testament to Tom and his abilities,” Matthew said.
“He has always been an exceptional apprentice. There’s no pushbacks, he does what he’s told, he listens, he learns, he asks the right questions.”
“We really just wish him the best of luck and hopefully he represents us well again at the international competition.”
SuniTAFE Heavy Automotive Teacher Will Sharpe has taught Tom throughout his apprenticeship, and continues to be a mentor for him during his WorldSkills preparations.
“Tom has always displayed exceptional drive and a willingness to learn. His commitment to his studies has always stood out and this made him an excellent candidate for WorldSkills,” Will said.
“When I first met Tom during his first week at SuniTAFE, he showed up as a very quiet and shy student. Quickly though, I noticed a motivated approach to him. Not only did he aim to complete the work competency that was set out, he would often ask further questions and add some great depth to the content.”
Tom is looking forward to completing his apprenticeship this year. He is currently working on the final unit of his course.
To learn more about completing an apprenticeship in Heavy Commercial Vehicle Mechanical Technology (AUR31120) at SuniTAFE, click here