Top 10 candidates for
The Top 10 Apprentices. Top row from left: Emmanuel Bautista, John Sutton, Holomesi Tuineau, Kosema Fuiono, Nana Southall. Bottom row, from left: Victoria Anderson, Khan Silva, Frey Head, Liam Blom, Mithun Reddy

PrintNZ and Competenz/Te Pūkenga have announced this year’s Top 10 candidates for the BJ Ball Papers Apprentice of the Year.

Ruth Cobb, chief executive PrintNZ, Ruth Cobb comments that despite the smaller pool of graduates during 2021, there was no shortage of talent.

She says, “It was still very difficult to narrow down to just 10. The job of getting it down to five will be even harder, as they are all deserving candidates.

“These apprentices have all completed the hardest two years of their apprenticeship amidst the disruption of Covid-19. It is a testament to them that their talent has shone through. They have fully illustrated their individual skills and personalities, while navigating a variety of obstacles thrown up by the pandemic.

“That is huge credit to them individually, as well as to their employers and managers for providing much-needed support throughout – particularly when business pressures will have already been heightened, given current circumstances.

“In fact, despite undertaking the two toughest years of their apprenticeships under the umbrella of Covid-19, many of these apprentices were able to stay ahead of the game and complete their assignments early.

“Our Competenz training advisors – Malcolm Pearce, Steven Jack and Grant Alsop – have spoken in glowing terms as to the dedication and commitment to high-quality of these apprentices.

She also paid tribute to the ongoing support of principal sponsor, BJ Ball Papers. She says, “They have provided steadfast support of the Apprentice of the Year Awards for many years. Alongside Heidelberg and Trust4Skills, they ensure that we can celebrate the amazing talent in our industry.”

Top Five Sector winners

Soon, PrintNZ will announce five sector Apprentice of the Year winners from within the initial Top 10.

PrintNZ will announce The BJ Ball Print Industry Apprentice of the Year Award winner on stage at the Pride In Print Awards gala dinner, this year to be held on June 17 at Te Pae Christchurch Convention Centre.

The Top 10 Apprentices are:
Victoria Anderson – Signbiz (Hawke’s Bay)
Emmanuel Bautista – Pakworld (Christchurch)
Liam Blom – ACI Screen & Print (Auckland)
Kosema Fuiono – Blue Star Collard (Auckland)
Frey Head – Oji Fibre Solutions Paper Bag (Auckland)
Mithun Reddy – Philstic Labels (Auckland)
Khan Silva – Jenkins Freshpac (Tauranga)
Nana Southall – Blue Star Constellation (Auckland)
John Sutton – Opal Packaging (Hawke’s Bay)
Holomesi Tuineau – Amcor Flexibles Asia Pacific (Auckland)

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