On track and winning awards with a little help

On track and winning awards with a little help

  • Published on Thursday 12 September, 2013
  • 3 min. to read


As adults, what we say to young people can make a lasting impression on their life. Emma Harrison of Carisbrook found it confronting to be told she would never amount to anything because she wanted to be a hairdresser – her dream job. From a little girl, hairdressing was all Ms Harrison wanted to do.

The denigration of what is a great career in high demand could easily have had a negative influence on her when looking for a career after secondary school because it was the only trade that interested her.

With a helping hand from her MEGT Australian Apprenticeships Centre Mentor, Ms Harrison is gaining praise for her work with Caitlyn Calder at Coco Red Hair & Beauty while she undertakes her Certificate III in Hairdressing.

Ms Harrison says although she did not expect the tiredness that came with working full time, has never been afraid of hard work. ‘At work I am always on my feet doing something.’

Ms Harrison started receiving mentoring assistance from MEGT in November 2012 as part of the Australian Government’s Apprentice Mentoring Program. The Program provides support for first year apprentices in trades leading to a National Skills Needs Qualification – at a time they are at greatest risk of dropping out of their apprenticeship. ‘Kyleigh Rivett has been my mentor,’ explains Ms Harrison, ’and she has always listened when I have questions or concerns. Kyleigh has helped me to deal with things and not just ‘shove them elsewhere’. This has helped me to be better at work and not let my personal life affect me professionally.

‘I have appreciated having Kyleigh to bounce my ideas and concerns off. She never judges me but listens and helps me work through whatever is going on. I have appreciated the extra hours that Kyleigh has put in to helping me with my apprenticeship, including out of hours stuff. This ongoing support has been important for my long term wellbeing and employment.’

Ms Rivett believes Ms Harrison’s greatest strength is her ability to listen and take on what people are saying. “This is a skill she uses in her training both on the job and at trade school. The combination of her dedication to her trade, her ability to communicate and love of helping people smile is the reason Emma is a worthy winner of the 2013 Apprentice/Trainee of the Year in the Powercor Central Goldfields Business Awards.”

Ms Harrison is studying for her second year of Certificate III in Hairdressing in a career that she thoroughly enjoys. “My clients make my day and I am so thankful to be working with such a great team who are willing to put in the time to teach me the skills I need.”
Australian Apprenticeships are an Australian government initiative.