Local first year apprentices facing financial or personal hardship will be supported with a $15,000 scholarship to undertake their trade and study through a NSW Government scholarship program.

Member for Cootamundra Steph Cooke said applications are now open for the Bert Evans Apprentice Scholarship which will support 120 people to either start, change, or further their career. 

“This scholarship program offers a great incentive for eligible locals to kick-start their career. Whether you need to purchase new tools, cover fuel or car maintenance, or pay for additional study, these scholarships have helped people overcome personal barriers to finish their apprenticeships and follow their trade calling,” Ms Cooke said.

“We have seen a lot of success from the program in our region, with residents being able to upskill and gain employment, whilst also boosting the local workforce of our small businesses.”

“Under the last round, five scholarships were awarded to students across a number of industries including hairdressing and electrotechnology.”

The NSW Government will invest $1.8 million in the program, which provides $5,000 over three years to support apprentices who demonstrate a high aptitude for vocational education and training and are committed to their on the job and formal training.

Minister for Skills and Training Alister Henskens said there were more than 107,000 people in-training across NSW, a 29 per cent increase on the year before.  

“Apprenticeships are a critical part of ensuring NSW has a pipeline of skilled workers, but we also understand the financial limitations and challenges that arise for apprentices while completing their trade,” Mr Henskens said.

“As NSW has seen through bushfires, floods and the pandemic, apprentices remain a vital part of the economy and make a strong contribution to local businesses and communities.”

“The Bert Evans Apprentice Scholarships are in addition to the 100,000 fee-free apprenticeships and 70,000 fee-free traineeships and other low-fee courses funded by the NSW Government.”

The scholarship program is named in honour of the late Bert Evans AO, a passionate advocate of vocational education for more than 30 years.

Applications are open and will close Friday, 27 May 2022.

For more information and to apply visit www.education.nsw.gov.au/skills-nsw/bert-evans-scholarships or phone 13 28 11.