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Breaking down gender barriers

Albany apprentice April Mackness never let gender stereotypes get in the way of her career.

On leaving school, April took two pre-apprenticeship courses – in mechanics and metal fabrication – at South Regional TAFE’s Albany campus.

And this year, she has started a metal fabrication apprenticeship at a local construction firm.

April is one of a growing number of females choosing to work in trades traditionally carried out by men, and showing she can handle the skills just as well as her male counterparts.

April said the pre-apprenticeship course gave her the basic skills for the job.

“I enjoy working with my hands and in this job, I’m learning new things all the time,” April said.

As part of a team building big farm sheds, April welds, cuts, shapes and fixes steel. She said she enjoyed seeing the buildings go up and took pride in a job well done.

Her lecturer Josh Cunningham said April was one of a few female apprentices who had trained at the college, and she had shown she was as capable as the males.

Josh said April was also as competent with her theory as she was with her practical skills.

“Her written work is exceptional, and she’s very good at research,” Josh said.

“She’s driven and self-motivated – she’s doing very well,” he said.

April is thriving on expanding her skills and once she has her trade qualification, she can look forward to a bright future in a solid industry.

For more information on pre-apprenticeships and apprentice training at South Regional TAFE, visit https://bit.ly/2ePkAB9.

Page last updated June 15, 2018