At this year’s Apprentice Training Awards, we were excited to award our third GAN International Scholarship.

Habibi came to Australia early in 2021 after leaving his homeland of Afghanistan when the Taliban returned to power in late 2021. Immediately prior, he had been working in roles assisting the Australian Embassy and US Air Force, which placed him in a difficult position with the change of power.

Habibi and his family settled in Dandenong to commence their new lives and to learn their new adopted homeland’s different laws, education and health systems, language and culture expectations.

Recognising employment and training as a vital part of the settling process, Habibi drew upon his transferrable skills and life experience to seek a new career as an Electrician in Australia.

With the support of NECA Education & Careers and Stowe Australia, Habibi secured an Electrical apprenticeship. As an apprentice, Habibi has worked on several construction projects, including the Metro Rail Tunnel. Despite his journey to date, Habibi remains enthusiastic and eager to learn and continues to succeed in his apprenticeship.

As part of his Scholarship, Habibi would like to travel around Australia and New Zealand to gain experience in two main areas, being:

Other Major Infrastructure and large commercial projects around Australia and New Zealand, particularly how:

    • they give people from diverse backgrounds like himself a chance to learn new skills and build a skills legacy and provide him a more employment and financial future in secure in demand skills.
    • use of the Group Training Model to meet the project nature of the projects

Safety innovations and best practices – knowing that these major projects have tight deadlines but there is always a focus on doing things right and safely.

Habibi wants to inspire others from different backgrounds to pursue a career as an electrical apprentice and highlight the diversity and exciting areas that it can cover. He knew nothing about the Group Training Model until he started his apprenticeship and want to share his experience with others looking to enter into apprenticeships to train into in-demand areas.  Learning about social diversity on other major projects and large commercial builds and the value added to the workforce as a whole will only enhance his knowledge to share with others.

In addition, learning how other projects around the country attract, train, and retain a whole range of talent of all ages, backgrounds can be shared with his current co-workers, project manager and managers.

He has a particular interest in Work Health and Safety since experiencing the importance placed on it in his current work environment. He is inspired by innovations in the industry and the sharing of best practice by organisations such as ANZETA (Australian and New Zealand Electrotechnology Training Alliance) where members made up of GTO’s and RTOs across Australia and New Zealand share innovations and collate injury statistics to establish best practice which ultimately leads to reduced injuries of workers. He like to be involved in learning about these GTO work and innovations around Australia and New Zealand and bring this knowledge back to his own workplace to share with others.

Habibi also received the Inspiration Award for Overcoming Adversity on the night.  Find out more about the other award winners here.