The husband and wife team at A Grade Auto Electrics is all about giving back to industry and supporting young apprentices.
Having started in the industry over 20 years ago, Mick Shergold and his wife have helped over a dozen apprentices into the auto electrical trade. While many of these apprentices have moved on to other employment, their apprenticeship has provided a solid foundation to build their trade careers.
Mick Shergold originally started taking on apprentices due to the lack of qualified tradespeople in his industry and his desire to expand his business. The team now employ 11 staff, five of whom are apprentices.
“A lot of kids come straight from high school and are not aware of the broad scale opportunities that an apprenticeship can offer,” said Mick.
“One of the benefits of taking on apprentices is that you get to train them your way. They gain experience working on all our different types of vehicles, so they become very good at what we do.
A Grade Auto Electrics has a number of apprentices that are eligible for the Queensland Government’s free apprenticeships for under 21s funding, meaning they no longer have to pay each apprentice’s training fees. Mick said the incentive has definitely lightened the financial burden, and in the future will enable them to train more apprentices.
“Having the fee-free training assistance makes it easy for us to take on new apprentices – that’s one of the main advantages of the funding,” said Mick.
Certificate III in Automotive Electrical Technology (AUR30316) apprentice, Joel Rankin has been with A Grade Auto Electrics for three years now and said that coming from a strong automotive background growing up, pursuing an automotive electrical trade career was always on the cards.
“Dad was into racing, so I was brought up around cars. Once I left school, I knew that an automotive career was what I wanted, so I started to look for apprenticeships,” Joel said.
“The main benefit of taking on an apprenticeship is the fact that you’re guaranteed a job at the end of your training.”
Minister for Training and Skills Development Shannon Fentiman said A Grade Auto Electrics plays a vital role in skilling up young Queenslanders for their successful careers.
“There is a growing need for skilled auto electricians and our free apprenticeships for under 21s initiative has over 130 qualifications on offer for free in the high priority areas where we know there will be jobs.”
“All of our businesses, their skilled workers and apprentices will play a valuable role in our state’s recovery once the COVID-19 pandemic is over.”
The Certificate III in Automotive Electrical Technology is currently available through online and alternative delivery modes. For more information about TAFE Queensland’s automotive courses or to find out more about the free apprenticeships for under 21s funding, visit tafeqld.edu.au or call 1300 308 233.