Taranaki multi-sport champion Adam Fraser is now its panelbeating champion.
Last night, Fraser graduated with a National Certificate in Advanced Technical-Collision Repair at a joint graduation ceremony in New Plymouth.
The event involved 70 students from 18 industry training organisations. The ceremony was a New Plymouth District Council initiative run in partnership with the Mayors' Taskforce for Jobs to recognise the skills of trade graduates and apprentices.
Mr Fraser's level five qualification takes him as high as he can go in the panelbeating stakes and puts him in an exclusive club.
"Very few people in New Zealand have it. No-one in Taranaki does. It's more a management qualification. It was a year's worth of study," Mr Fraser said.
A panelbeater since leaving school 13 years ago, the multi-sport athlete said the qualification gave him the skills needed to run his own panelbeating business.
Mayor Harry Duynhoven said the district would always need skilled tradesmen and women.
"I myself started as an apprentice electrician so I have a high regard for the role of the trades in society. Without these skills, everything would rapidly grind to a halt. These people have learned valuable skills that will help our district continue to grow and thrive," he said.
Industry qualifications recognised last night included achievement in everything from carpentry, hairdressing and water reticulation through to horticulture and community support services.
The goal of the Mayors' Taskforce for Jobs is that all young people under 25 years old are engaged in education, training, work or other activities.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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