STAWELL'S Sam Cocks, Damien Waack, Tim McQueen and Vanessa McKinnon are among a record seventeen trainees and apprentices nominated for the 2014 Powercor Wimmera Business Awards Apprentice/Trainee of the year award.
Cocks is an engineering apprentice with Stawell Hydraulics, Waack works as an apprentice baker at Waacks Bakery in Stawell, McQueen is employed at RJ and RA Altmann Engineering and McKinnon is a trainee with Grampians YMCA.
According to Tammy McDonald, project officer with the Wimmera Development Association, the high calibre of the 17 applicants will make selecting just one winner a difficult task for the judges.
The winner will be announced at the gala presentation evening on September 26 at the Wimmera Events Centre, Longerenong.
"Apprenticeships and Traineeships are a highly valued, important and unique pathway to skilled employment for our region," Ms McDonald said.
"These young people are building skills that will underpin our future economy. These employers are to be congratulated for fostering these young people, building their businesses and providing opportunities for young people in our communities.
"By recognising the importance of apprentices and trainees to the region through the awards, we hope to encourage more young people to consider an apprenticeship, traineeship or school-based apprenticeship and more businesses and employers to offer a local training opportunity."
With 82 applications across the five shires of Hindmarsh, Horsham, Northern Grampians, West Wimmera and Yarriambiack, the 2014 Powercor Wimmera Business Awards are set to showcase the strength of businesses within our region.
The field for the apprentice/trainee of the year awards: Luke Booth, Grant Dumesny, Emma Forrester, Darcy Dubois, Sam Cocks, Sean Maybery, Timothy McQueen, Damian Waack, Chris Gulvin, Issac Mackley, Stephanie Cookson, Tegan Kerrins, Todd Richardson, Tim Phelan, Vanessa McKinnon, Sam Winfield and Sarah Smith.