The 2023 Apprentice of the Year Winner is..

13 November 2023

The final leg of our 20th Apprentice of the Year competition took place last week in Auckland. 

We are delighted to announce Jack Nevines as the 2023 champion.  Jack hails from Auckland, is employed by Faulkner Construction and trained through BCITO, Te Pūkenga.

Runner-up went to Isaac Posthuma and Jessica Nielsen took out third place to round out a talented podium.

The eight carpentry apprentices that competed at the two-day event at CONZTRUCT Auckland North were challenged with a six-hour practical skills test and a 45-minute interview with the judging panel. This year’s project was to craft a work bench that will be donated to early learning centres through Evolve Education Group. 

The judges said that Jack performed exceptionally well across all three categories of the competition, impressing them at every stage.

"Jack showed a natural ability to lead, and the management of his project was faultless. Jack’s extensive knowledge of the building code, methodology, and building products stood out and showed his great interest and understanding of the industry."

"In the final stages of the competition, his skills all came together to demonstrate his top-class craftsmanship. Jack should be extremely proud of this result and the impressive apprentice that he has proved to be." 

Northern finalist, Isaac Posthuma took out second place. Isaac is employed by JR Build and trained through BCITO, Te Pūkenga. The judges said his performance in the practical competition was most impressive. 

"Isaac surpassed any performance witnessed by the judges in the practical component of the competition to date. Any bystander at the practical would agree with this statement."

"Isaac is an excellent craftsman, and at the young age of 20, he has a bright and fulfilling career in construction ahead of him. With very few points between this year’s winners, Isaac should be especially proud of himself."

Waikato based Jess Nielsen was awarded a well-deserved third place.  Jess is employed by Sloann Annand Builders and also trained through BCITO, Te Pūkenga. 

"Jessica is a highly impressive young person. Her building knowledge shone through in her interview, and she also showcased a great level of skill in the National practical competition where she scored very highly." said the Judges. 

"During her interview, it was clear that Jessica has a very in-depth understanding of her project and she could speak confidently about the entire build process. Well done, Jessica, you have a very bright future ahead of you." 

A huge congratulations to all eight national finalists who proudly represented their respective regions. Each had to compete against more than 100 other apprentices in their local competitions which is a significant achievement. 

A huge congratulations to all eight national finalists who proudly represented their respective regions. Each had to compete against more than 100 other apprentices in their local competitions which is a significant achievement. 

20 years on, Aotearoa’s apprentices are sawing to new heights
Over the course of 20 years, the Apprentice of the Year competition has celebrated the talent and skill of carpentry apprentices and highlighted to the public the breadth of opportunities within the construction industry. This year was no different; we’d like to extend a massive congratulations to Jack and all the apprentices across the country who participated in the competition.

Every year, the team at Master Builders are blown away by the level of confidence and competence of these budding apprentices who we are confident will go on to do great things in our sector.

A transitioning sector 
During the last 20 years of the competition there has been positive growth in the number of apprentices joining the sector and a gradual shift in perceptions towards a career in the trades.  Registered Master Builders National President, Johnny Calley attributes this to a greater awareness of the benefits a career can bring.  

“A better understanding of the sector has led to the transition away from a traditional 'blue-collar' workforce to a widely respected industry that is attractive to a diverse range of people. Not only are we seeing an increase of more female building apprentices, but many people now are entering the trade as a second or third career choice.”

Over the last two decades the Registered Master Builders Apprentice of the Year competition, in partnership with CARTERS has celebrated apprentices and their employers. Those apprentices that enter these mentoring programmes and competitions go on to be industry leaders. Recognising the up-coming talent and honing apprentices’ skills is critical to continuous improvement and growth within the sector.

Continued support from our sponsors
Apprentice of the Year would not be possible without the loyalty and support of our sponsors. Their investment in the competition and our industry is fantastic and hugely appreciated. 

"CARTERS are proud to partner with the Apprentice of the Year competition. It’s great to be able to watch these talented apprentices giving it their all in the competition and growing from the experience. We’re committed to supporting apprentices from across the country as they build their careers in the construction industry. Being involved in the competition is a great way to celebrate emerging talent and our future industry leaders."

CARTERS Chief Executive, Mike Guy  

"Seeing so much support for apprentices and their employers in this year's competition is fantastic.  Every year, the Apprentice of the Year event unites industry employers and stakeholders to celebrate emerging talent and future leaders.  Apprentices coming through BCITO’s training programmes are the industry's future, and it’s great to witness them showcase their skills nationally.  Congratulations to all the national finalists for their outstanding achievements, and well done Registered Master Builders for continuing to support apprenticeships and showcase excellence." 

BCITO Te Pūkenga Director,  Greg Durkin

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