Blaxland local Tyler Pockran has been announced as the winner of School-Based Apprentice of the Year at the Central and Northern Sydney Training Awards hosted by Training Services NSW.
The TAFE NSW student is studying a Certificate III in Commercial Cookery while completing his HSC at Blaxland High School. As part of his studies, Tyler secured employment as an apprentice chef at Tetsuya’s, which was featured in The World’s 50 Best Restaurants from the list’s inception in 2002 through to 2013.
Tyler said winning the award is an awesome feeling and hopes to one day open his own restaurant.
“I was shocked at first to be named School-Based Apprentice of the Year. It’s a great feeling to already be on the way to my career dreams, without this I’d be starting from scratch next year,” Tyler said.
“I feel grateful to be getting experience at an amazing restaurant like Tetsuya’s. It provides me with a unique insight that many people don’t have the opportunity to get.”
Tyler is fulfilling a growing need for more chefs, with more than 46,000 jobs currently unfilled nationwide in the hospitality sector as of May 2021. Data from SEEK shows 8060 advertisements for chef positions and 14,026 as restaurant and cafe managers, with businesses unable to find Australian workers to fill their vacancies.
TAFE NSW Commerical Cookery teacher Murray Gracie paid tribute to Tyler’s commitment to progressing his career through education and training.
“Tyler is a wonderful example of how someone can get real-world skills and experience through TAFE NSW to fast-track their career while still in school,” Mr Gracie said.
“He not only attends school four days a week and TAFE NSW one day a week, but also travels to the city where he works at Tetsuya's on the weekend.
“For someone of his age Tyler shows amazing stamina, along with a commitment, passion and dedication to the industry that I’m sure will lead to a fulfilling, successful career.”
The NSW Training Awards celebrate the excellence of apprentices, trainees and students undertaking vocational education and training.
The winners from the Central and Northern Sydney Training Awards will be interviewed and considered for the NSW Training Awards which will are planned to be held in Sydney later this year.
Media contact: Kellie Dillon, TAFE NSW Communications Specialist, firstname.lastname@example.org, 0408 006 866.