Apprentice shows it's never too late to find passion
AFTER spending several years working at an abattoir in Dinmore, a job he began straight out of school, Adam Stephan realised it wasn't where he wanted to spend the rest of his working life.
He found his passion after starting mature aged apprenticeship at the age of 25 and is flourishing in a new field.
The Redbank tradie is in the fourth and final year of a carpentry apprenticeship, working for commercial builder Stokes Wheeler.
Mr Stephan, now 28, has spent the past three-and-a-half years working on a project involving multi-level residential buildings on Hope Island on the Gold Coast, watching them from rise from the ground up.
His hard yakka was recognised this week as he was named Apprentice of the Year at the 2019 Master Builders Gold Coast Housing and Construction Awards.
"You get a lot of self achievement out of it, you get to look back and see what you've together," he said.
"It's so practical. That's what attracts me most to the trade.
"(The award) is really rewarding. It's nice to know people are watching when you're putting in the hard yards."
It's a mindset that extends past working hours, as he has slowly done up the home he shares with his wife to how they want it.
"I just realised (his past work) is not what I wanted to do," he said.
"I started looking at what I had a passion for and stumbled across carpentry and fell in love with it.
"I've always been interested in working with my hands and putting things together and seeing how they work. I was never doing that for a career."
The State Government expect a $32 million investment as part of the Skills for Queensland program will help 60,000 young people into high-demand trades over the next four years..
It aims to push more apprentices and trainees taken on by employers, which the government promising to pay the training costs of workers aged under 21.
"If you're passionate about anything... the sooner you can start the better," Mr Stephan said.