International NMIT (Northern Melbourne Institute of TAFE) locksmiths are finding the key to success lies with a local employer, Wynns Locksmiths of Preston. From a total staff of 16, Wynns has eight current or former NMIT international students working for the firm from countries as diverse as Japan, Malaysia, England, Israel, Romania, Colombia and India.
Max Cherry, NMIT's Locksmithing Coordinator, says the relationship with Steve Wynn, the company's founder, goes back 28 years to when he taught Steve as an apprentice at Essendon Technical School. “Steve's business has always supported the training of young people and been really pro-active at looking at new opportunities. He supports his students and provides great training in a wide range of skills - it really complements their training at the institute.”
Aron Borysiewicz, Wynns's Operations Manager, says the international students are a welcome addition to his team. “International students are very dedicated. They've made a big step to come and study in Australia, so they've got a mature attitude and strive to be the best they can be. The company also benefits because we can offer customer service in over a dozen different languages.”
Steve Pok, 20, a current NMIT student, has been working at Wynns for 15 months. “It's really interesting, I'm learning a lot. Studying can be mostly theoretical, but here at Wynns it's all real life situations.” Steve enjoys the variety of the work, everything from serving on the front counter, to building locks and helping qualified locksmiths with on-site repairs. After graduating Steve hopes to get a full-time job at Wynns and continue to live in Australia. He is keen for a career in locksmithing. “It's a passion. I love it. It must be in the blood - my father worked as a locksmith in Malaysia.”
George Olaru, 39, is a former international NMIT locksmithing student now working full-time at Wynns. George had many jobs in his home country of Romania, including as a self-taught locksmith. He enjoyed the work, but there were limited opportunities in Romania, so after saving some money working on cruise ships, he came to Australia and studied locksmithing. It's a choice he's glad he made. “It's never boring, every job is different, from simple re-keying to installing a video surveillance system. Wynns is great, it's not like a big corporation, everyone knows one another, we celebrate everyone's birthday - it's more like a family.” George also values the time he spent at NMIT. “The teachers were all really good and the range of machines and tools was amazing. Without NMIT I wouldn't have this job.”
International locksmithing students are based at NMIT's Heidelberg Campus where they complete an 18 month Certificate III in Locksmithing before undertaking a six month Diploma of Engineering Technology (Security Engineering). Half the students' time is spent studying at NMIT and the other half gaining hands-on experience with a firm like Wynns. NMIT is the only education provider in Australia registered to deliver the courses to international students and the only provider of locksmithing services for apprentices in Victoria. NMIT also caters for locksmiths from Tasmania, South Australia, Western Australia, the Northern Territory and New Zealand.
Wynns Locksmiths are located at 2 Bruce Street, Preston, phone 03 9495 1122.
Interview / Photo Opportunity
Media enquiries should be directed to the NMIT Communications Officer, James Gardener, on (03) 92691579, 0413 483 182 or firstname.lastname@example.org
NMIT (Northern Melbourne Institute of TAFE) - Situated on six campuses and six training centres throughout Melbourne's north plus a regional campus at Ararat, NMIT delivers vocational training, higher education and lifelong learning capabilities for a global workforce. NMIT forges partnerships with community, industry and government to produce practical, solution orientated graduates capable of making meaningful contributions to their chosen field of endeavour.
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Interview / Photo Opportunity
Media enquiries should be directed to the NMIT Communications Officer, James Gardener.