Wintec apprentices drill down on their carpentry skills to compete in the NZCB Apprentice Challenge

Wintec apprentices will compete against in the Waikato regional heat for the NZCB Apprentice Challenge

Wintec carpentry apprentices are competing against each other this week in the hopes of winning $50,000 worth of prizes, the Ken Read Memorial Trophy and the title of the NZCB best apprentice.

Twelve carpentry apprentices who are studying at Wintec Centre for Trades will compete in the New Zealand Certified Builders (NZCB) association’s annual Apprentice Challenge’s Waikato heat held at The Base in Hamilton this Saturday. 

Joining a number of other apprentices from the Waikato, the Wintec cohort will turn from comrades to competitors as they compete against each other in a skills-based challenge, with each apprentice vying for a place in the national final

Only one apprentice will be selected at the end of the day to compete at the national final, which will be held at the NZCB Annual Conference and Expo in Wellington this June. 

The winner will receive the Ken Read Memorial Trophy and $50,000 worth of prizes, sponsored by ITM, and prizes are awarded for second and third place getters. 

The challenge is open to all apprentices across the country that are employed by NZCB builders or enrolled with Industry Training Association Building (ITAB), a programme coordinated at Wintec by educator Alan Warburton, who is also the recently elected NZCB Waikato President.  

Alan, who is passionate about the work he does with ITAB apprentices at Wintec, is thrilled at the number of Wintec apprentices who are rising to the challenge.  

“It’s a great opportunity for them to show off their skills, meet other like-minded apprentices and some key industry people as well,” he says. 

“Mostly though it’s about having fun and getting out there. The prizes are pretty enticing for apprentices too I suppose!” 

Prior to the regional heats, competing apprentices will be advised of the project they are to build. They will have eight hours to complete that project using materials and timber all supplied by ITM. 

Finished projects must meet minimum safety standards and will be judged by a panel of industry professionals, assessing a range of building elements including craftsmanship, assembly, working to plan, safety and time management. 

Find out more about studying Carpentry at Wintec.