Dedicated Grafton students rewarded

AFTER working all day, it has not been unusual for dedicated apprentice chef Jamie Brown to spend hours at home researching ingredients for menus to be used in her TAFE assignments.

Now, her dedication has been rewarded, with the young Grafton resident coming home with three awards at the TAFE awards night on Tuesday, including being named the campus's highest achiever in a trade course.

“I knew I had won one, but the others took me completely by surprise,” she said.

Jamie is in her final year of her chef's apprenticeship and works at Zack's on Bent Street in South Grafton.

Jamie said she enjoyed the challenges of her work and believed it was important to attend to the theoretical side of study as well as the practical.

“It's not just a practical profession, you need to know how to write menus, do yield tests and find costs percentages,” she said.

Despite the time involved, she said she couldn't imagine working in any other industry.

“For a long time I knew I wanted to do it, from helping parents and grandparents in the kitchen as a kid,” she said.

It was a similar story for fellow TAFE achiever Tamara Evers.

Tamara, who works at Pip's for Hair in Grafton Shoppingworld, recently completed her apprenticeship through the North Coast Institute of TAFE campus in Coffs Harbour. Last week she was named first in her class for certificate III in hairdressing.

Like Jamie, she said she found it easy to work hard at something she loved doing.

“I meet new people and get to be creative every day,” she said.

Tamara said young people considering a trade should complete work experience first, and see if any short courses were available locally.

It was best to get a taste of the industry before diving into an apprenticeship.

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