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Trainee of the year takes brave leap into new career

Michael Weaver 27 September 2019
Amelia Gulliford.

2019 ACT Trainee of the Year Award winner, Amelia Gulliford. Photo: Supplied.

As an accomplished dancer, Amelia Gulliford is well used to taking brave leaps. It’s how she came to be named 2019 ACT Trainee of the Year.

Amelia was one of 14 category winners at this year’s ACT Training Awards, showcasing the commitment, innovation and outstanding achievements of all those in the ACT vocational education and training (VET) sector.

The awards are an opportunity to recognise and reward the success of individuals and organisations in the ACT, and represent the Territory at the Australian Training Awards in Brisbane in November.

Amelia initially completed a Diploma of Beauty Therapy at the Canberra Institute of Technology (CIT) and began a promising career as a beauty therapist.

“I was working in beauty therapy for two years and I managed two different salons, so I felt very quickly that I had reached the goal that I wanted to achieve in beauty therapy,” Amelia told Region Media.

Having decided that further study at university didn’t interest her, Amelia began a Certificate III in Business Administration that helped build her organisation and liaison skills.

Amelia now uses her skills and experience as a liaison officer for Australian Apprentices within ACT Government where she promotes and supports the growth and retention of ACT apprentices and trainees.

“I get to go out and see apprentices and their employers and make sure that they’re ready to sign up to CIT and do their training plans.

“Through that, I’ve definitely learnt that I really like to see people in different areas of their work, and I like helping people, so I’ve looked at becoming a student mentor or being a trainer in the areas that I’m already qualified in,” Amelia said.

After being nominated by her teachers at CIT and her on-the-job managers, Amelia was named the ACT’s top trainee ahead of six other finalists.

Amelia said the award acknowledges the hard work she has put in and the support from her teachers and colleagues at the CIT.

“Being an ambassador for VET is something that I’m also really proud of as I do love the fact that hands-on learning has been the best way for me to progress in my career.

“It’s really nice to have a higher platform to show people how passionate I am about the pathway I’ve chosen.”

The 2019 ACT Training Award winners:

  • ACT apprentice of the year – James White, Certificate III in Carpentry
  • ACT Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island student of the year – Taylor Williams, Diploma of Government
  • ACT school-based apprentice of the year – Olivia Horvat, Certificate III in Individual Support
  • ACT VET teach/trainer of the year – Ken Wilson, Canberra Institute of Technology
  • ACT vocational student of the year – Rebecca Sturt, Qualification: Certificate III in Individual Support
  • ACT industry collaboration award – ACT Cyber Security Skills Accelerator Collaboration
  • ACT medium employer of the year – Capital Hotel Group
  • ACT large employer of the year – Communities@Work
  • ACT training provider of the year – Canberra Institute of Technology, winner (large); Wisdom Learning, winner (small).

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