Former W-League footballer, Trudy Camilleri who last played for
Sydney FC, Central Coast Mariners and Western Sydney Wanderers during
a seven-year career has turned her love of cars into a career. Trudy
is now passing her skills to the next generation of auto body
repairers as a teacher at TAFE NSW Ultimo.
While still at school, Trudy started to develop her automotive skills
working part-time in the family car restoration business. Trudy
planned to be a car engine builder once she had left school, but as
the business needed an auto body repair technician this is the road
Trudy has been surrounded by cars her whole life. It was very normal
for her to be in the shed helping and working on cars after school,
and on the weekend with her father. As soon as Trudy turned 15, she
secured two part-time jobs whilst juggling school and playing
professional football for the Central Coast Mariners. It was when
Trudy was in year 10, that she secured an apprenticeship as a panel
beater and commenced studying at TAFE NSW Campbelltown under the
guidance of her teacher, Frank Goodlad.
“I really enjoyed the learning environment at TAFE NSW, and was
amazed how well I took to the experience compared to school. It was
most likely because I was doing something I really believed I was
meant to do. With my Dad as a mentor and a best friend, he taught me
everything I know about cars today. At that time, I had a more mature
head than you might expect from someone in their mid-twenties.
“I had a little bit of direction in terms of the path I wanted to go
down, but hadn’t really decided on anything concrete. I just knew it
had to involve cars.”
After a few family matters, and completing a Certificate II in
Automotive and Marine Trimming Technology, Trudy decided she wanted
more of a challenge, so reached out to TAFE NSW to see what automotive
teaching positions may be available. The stars aligned as Trudy
secured an auto body teaching role at TAFE NSW Ultimo, which is where
she focuses her energy and passion today.
When not teaching, Trudy is restoring cars and completing her
Certificate III in Automotive Refinishing Technology at TAFE NSW
Campbelltown. Some of the projects Trudy is currently working on
includes a HK Holden Kingswood, her Holden FE Panel Van and 2009
Harley-Davidson Fat Boy motorcycle.
Over the next three years to 2022, the Commonwealth Government
forecasts an extra 100,000
jobs for Australia’s automotive industry. The prediction reveals a
lack of skilled workers which will drive demand for occupations
including motor vehicle and parts salespeople, motor mechanics,
vehicle parts and accessories fitters, panel beaters, vehicle
painters, vehicle body builders and trimmers and automotive electricians.
TAFE NSW Ultimo Autobody Repair and Finish head teacher Garry Clear
said that since joining the TAFE NSW Ultimo teaching section Trudy has
found the experience interesting and challenging.
“Trudy has gained the respect of students and just goes from strength
to strength. She has all the skills, determination, and is focused on
the future. Trudy has something special. She is full of confidence,
passionate about cars and teaching the technicians of tomorrow.”
Trudy is a former Regional WorldSkills Australia Autobody Repair Gold
Medalist and mentored 33 competitors at the 2018 National WorldSkills
To find out more about studying automotive courses at TAFE NSW phone
13 16 01 or visit www.tafensw.edu.au
Media contact: Laura Kelly, TAFE NSW Business Partner, mobile: 0411
777 676 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
 Burgess, M. (2018). Skill shortages
and natural attrition create 100,000 job openings for automotive
industry. [online]. The Advertiser. Available at: https://www.adelaidenow.com.au/business/work/skill-shortages-and-natural-attrition-create-100000-job-openings-for-automotive-industry/news-story/fe6d1db74ddd82a03faee4780b0059cb