Tradies challenging stereotypes during National Careers Week

TAFE NSW graduate and Port Stephens local Amber Sullivan is studying a Certificate III in Plumbing.

DURING National Careers Week (May 16-22), locals considering a professional pivot were urged to look to TAFE NSW to challenge stereotypes and follow their passions.

Minister for Skills and Tertiary Education Alister Henskens said with enrolments for many courses now open for semester two, the time was right for Port Stephens residents to get the in-demand skills for the jobs they want.

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“There has never been a better time to explore your future and how the NSW Government can help you get a first job, a new job or a better job,” Mr Henskens said.

“The NSW Government is working hard to turbocharge the take-up of vocational education and training by investing in fee-free and low fee training courses, which aim to get people into jobs and address skills shortages across the state.”

Mr Henskens said Careers Week was dedicated to raising aspirations, challenging stereotypes, and broadening horizons about careers.

TAFE NSW graduate and Port Stephens local Amber Sullivan is certainly challenging stereotypes and broadening horizons by studying a Certificate III in Plumbing.

Ms Sullivan has secured employment at Port Stephens Council and said she couldn’t be happier to turn up to work every day and get her hands dirty.

“I’m so glad I took the leap and studied an untraditional career path.

“Every day is different and the variety of projects I get to work on makes each day really interesting.

“My teachers at TAFE NSW are really supportive and encouraging.

“People don’t seem to expect a female arriving at a job but I hope with people seeing me turn up to a job site, I can help to change people’s idea of what it means to be a tradie.

“It’s such a rewarding career, I knew I wanted to do physical work and didn’t want to be in an office.

“TAFE NSW gave me the direction and the qualifications I need to become a plumber,” Ms Sullivan said.

It comes as new research reveals women comprise only two percent of workers in construction.

TAFE NSW provides women with pathways into a range of construction trades and already boasts a comparatively higher proportion of female enrolments in construction courses at nine percent.

To find out more about the range of building and construction courses at TAFE NSW visit or phone 131 601.

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