An apprentice joiner from New College Lanarkshire is in contention for Adult Apprentice of the Year at a prestigious awards ceremony.
Gordon Wilson is one of three apprentices to be shortlisted for the accolade at the Scottish Building Apprenticeship & Training Council (SBATC) Awards 2016.
The 33-year-old, who lives in Allanton, Shotts, combines his studies at our Motherwell Campus with working for Wilson Inglis Joiners in Bonkle, Wishaw.
A time-served stonemason, he has impressed his tutors after making the difficult decision to re-train as a joiner when the recession hit his own business.
He is now in his second and final year of the Level 3 SVQ in Carpentry and Joinery.
Gordon said: “This is quite an honour to be shortlisted – and it will be great to have that on my CV.
“It was a bit daunting at the start coming back to College, because I’m used to being at the top of the tree in my own trade, and I’ve come to this trade and I’ve had to start all over again.
“I still do a wee bit of stonework but the work dried up a lot after the recession – I was maybe doing a week of work and then a week in the house, so I wasn’t living to my means.
“It was a big decision to make at the time, and it has definitely helped that I’m a banker mason to trade, so I’m working with power tools all the time.
“Now that I’ve found my groove I’m really enjoying it and I want take it further.”
After completing his apprenticeship next summer, Gordon is hoping to continue his studies with a day-release advanced construction course.
He added: “I couldn’t have done it without William Wilson and William Inglis – it’s a fantastic company to work for with a great team of guys who always do quality work.
“And I would like to thank the staff at the College – particularly John McAvoy, Brian Bigger, Craig Tait and Danny Shearer – for their tuition and guidance throughout the course, because this nomination couldn’t have happened without their backing and belief.”
Gordon will join nominees across four categories at SBATC’s annual awards, which take place at the Scottish Parliament on Friday, November 18.
The winners of each category will receive £300, with runners-up receiving £200 and all finalists receiving £100.
SBATC, which was founded in 1934, regulates and monitors the working conditions, wages, recruitment and training of apprenticeships within the building industry throughout Scotland.
Danny Shearer, Assistant Head of Faculty of Engineering & Automotive, said: “Gordon has acquitted himself particularly well since starting his apprenticeship.
“He is a very positive influence within his peer group, and is always quick to help and encourage his classmates.
“He has made the transition from his previous trade of stonemasonry into his new trade of carpentry and joinery in a very positive way, and wants to develop as far as he can in his new career.
“The Carpentry and Joinery team are delighted that Gordon has made the final shortlist for this prestigious award, and feel it is well-deserved.”