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Rebecca Lee Hudson, from Dalyellup, was awarded the title of WA Trainee of the Year for 2019 at this year’s WA Training Awards.
A mother of three who went from working in human resources to training as a crane operator, Rebecca was commended by the judges for being an excellent role model, encouraging people of all ages to enter the industry and make the most of the great employment opportunities it offers.
Rebecca’s Certificate III in Mobile Crane Operations means she can now operate cranes weighing from eight to 100 tonnes. She has also obtained tickets using a slew and nob-slew mobile crane, non-slew mobile crane, operating rigging and driving a forklift truck.
As well as being a mature-age student, the fact that Rebecca is a woman in a male-dominated industry sends a strong signal to other women looking for jobs in non-traditional areas. Gender diversity in the transport and logistics sector is one of the emphases in this year’s Skills Forecast. Despite strong employment growth of 28 per cent in the last decade, only 20 per cent of employees in the Transport and Logistics were female in 2017.
Rebecca says communication, vigilance and encouragement from others have been key to her success.
“Having a good support network has made me confident and given me the ability to overcome any issues I encounter on the job. As a crane operator, you must be able to concentrate, be very aware of your surroundings and vigilant in your operational skills – lives depend on you.”