Australian Training Awards – Recognising the success stories of our system

Among the winners from the industry sectors supported by AIS at the Australian Training Awards in Brisbane on 21 November were a regional and remote electricity provider and a family-based electrical company.

The Awards are the peak, national awards for the vocational education and training (VET) sector, recognising individuals, businesses and registered training organisations for their contribution to skilling in Australia.

Minister for Employment, Skills, Small and Family Business, Senator the Hon Michaelia Cash, said the awards highlight the excellence that is being achieved in the VET sector.

“To be selected as a finalist is an outstanding achievement. All of the individuals, businesses and registered training organisations recognised at this year’s training awards are leaders and role models in their field,” Minister Cash said.

Essential Energy won the Australian Apprenticeships – Employer Award for making innovative improvements in training which provide beneficial outcomes for their apprentices and/or trainees in Australia and to their local community.

The company currently has apprentices in more than 50 towns, from Albury to Tweed Heads, to Broken Hill and many places in between. Its program provides post-apprenticeship opportunities and helps build a succession pool for higher-level roles within the business.

Astill’s Electrical Services Pty Ltd won the Medium Employer of the Year Award for excellence in the provision of ‘nationally recognised training’ to its employees.

Astill’s Electrical Services is a family-based company located in Kingaroy, and services all areas of the South Burnett and Sunshine Coast regions in Queensland. It currently has six team members from its staff of 20 undertaking apprenticeships.

Owners Mick and Amanda Astill strongly believe in investing in staff to improve their skillsets and keep up with the rapid pace of technology. All employees, including Mick and Amanda, have participated in training over the past twelve months. The very first employee of Astill’s Electrical, who started his electrical apprenticeship in 2010, remains a valuable member of the team.

Mick and Amanda also work actively with local high schools to provide work experience opportunities for students and young people.

Matthew King was runner-up in the VET Teacher/Trainer of the Year Award recognising innovation and excellence. Matthew is a trainer at Swan Trade Training Centre (STTC) where he delivers the pre-apprenticeship Certificate II in Electrotechnology.

Assistant Minister for Vocational Education, Training and Apprenticeships, the Hon Steve Irons MP, said the awards are an opportunity to celebrate the dedication, skills and passion of the students, trainers, employers and training organisations who make up our vibrant VET sector.

“Looking at the list of this year’s very impressive winners and finalists, you can see the breadth of rewarding career opportunities offered by vocational education and training, providing real skills for real careers,” Assistant Minister Irons said.

A full list of winners is attached and more information is available at