A former farmer turned Cairns hair salon owner has been named as Tropical North Queensland’s top apprentice of the year after purchasing a salon to become a hairdressing apprentice to build skills in her chosen profession.
Minister for Training and Skills Development Shannon Fentiman said Leanne Lomas took home the title of Harry Hauenschild Apprentice of the Year as one of the 11 winners at the regional final of the 58th Queensland Training Awards.
“When Leanne Lomas decides to do something, she gives it her all and realising her passion was hairdressing, Leanne left her life as a farmer in remote Miallo behind and set about making her training dream a reality,” Ms Fentiman said.
“Leanne purchased a salon, hired a senior stylist and became the apprentice. She is now a fully-qualified hairdresser and successful small business owner, and vocal VET advocate.
Member for Cairns Michael Healy said Leanne will now join the winners from six other regional Queensland Training Awards finals to become state finalists at the Queensland Training Awards State Gala Dinner on 14 September.
“All of our high calibre regional winners represent a wide range of industries and occupations, from plasterers, electricians, childcare centres and hairdressing salons, to community support organisations and big businesses,” Mr Healy said.
“I congratulate all of them for winning their categories in the regional final, and for their dedication to training.
“Being selected as a regional winner recognises their outstanding contribution to the state’s growth and economy and they should be proud of their achievements so far.
“The Palaszczuk Government is committed to supporting training and skills development for all Queenslanders.”
The Queensland Training Awards focuses the spotlight on the excellence that exists in the state’s training sector and supports the Queensland Government’s commitment to fostering skilled workforces.
The 11 regional award categories are Harry Hauenschild Apprentice of the Year; Bob Marshman Trainee of the Year; Vocational Student of the Year; Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Student of the Year; School-based Apprentice or Trainee of the Year; VET Teacher or Trainer of the Year; Equity VET Student of the Year; Community Training Initiative of the Year; and Small, Medium and Large Employer of the Year.
The Queensland Training Awards State Gala Dinner will be held in Brisbane on 14 September. The awards are run by the Department of Employment, Small Business and Training, with the support of regional and state sponsors.
Images are available of Harry Hauenschild Apprentice of the Year, Leanne Lomas here:
Tropical North Queensland regional winners:
Harry Hauenschild Apprentice of the Year
Leanne Lomas - Mossman
Bob Marshman Trainee of the Year
Chantelle Pedersen - Biboohra
Vocational Student of the Year
Daryl O'Toole - Cairns North
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Student of the Year
Reilly Luyten-Yet Foy - Whitfield
School-based Apprentice or Trainee of the Year
Jeremy Stainkey - Weipa
VET Teacher or Trainer of the Year
Cathryn Clarke - Tully
Equity VET Student of the Year
Andrew Ferreyra - Earlville
Community Training Initiative of the Year
Community Enterprises Australia Ltd - Cairns
Small Employer of the Year
Recharged Air and Electrical - Smithfield
Medium Employer of the Year
Robinson Civil Group - Wondecla
Large Employer of the Year.
Jubcan Venture T/A McDonald’s Cairns, Central, Cairns Esplanade, Woree, Edmonton, Gordonvale and Innisfail