Keen to build a new career, Daniel started an apprenticeship in locksmithing. Now a master locksmith, it turned out to be a better fit than ever imagined.
Daniel had travelled and moved between different positions and industries for ten years. With a young family at home, he decided to challenge himself and try something hands on.
“I’d already had multiple careers and I was a mature-age student, so I wanted to try something totally different. Locksmithing appealed to me.”
Even though he wanted to study a formal qualification, Daniel still couldn’t afford to take time off work. After looking into his options, he decided to embark upon an apprenticeship.
“There’s no way I could afford to go to uni and have a part-time job and support a family and then have a debt at the end of it. So this was a lot better. I had a full-time job and I was paid to have a day off every week and go to school.”
Daniel enrolled at Melbourne Polytechnic when it was called NMIT and found the course to be an extremely positive experience, particularly as it is renowned throughout the world.
“My teachers were really good, really interested in us. They pushed us hard and it’s a really good syllabus. Locksmiths trained by Melbourne Polytechnic are highly regarded, around the world.”
Locksmithing apprentices in their final year are eligible to compete in the Master Locksmith Association of Australasia’s Apprentice of the Year exam. The exam sees apprentices from Australia and New Zealand compete in practical and written challenges.
“It was a practical exam for four hours and there was a theory part for an hour. I had to complete locksmithing tasks to a very high standard.”
Daniel won the competition and was awarded the title of Master Locksmith for his efforts.
“It’s up to you what you do to prepare for it. I studied pretty hard and I won, so I have a master locksmith qualification now.”
“I also won a trip to Europe to visit the Silca and Abus factories and they flew me over to New Zealand to attend the Master Locksmith Association conference, which was great.”
Daniel’s advice to prospective students is to be prepared to challenge yourself and learn the diverse range of skills required to be a locksmith.
“It’s a really challenging course but you get a lot out of it. You learn all sorts of carpentry skills and metalwork and they teach you how to weld. When you’re qualified you’ve got to back it up! You do everything, even electronics.”
Having completed his apprenticeship, Daniel now looks back positively on the decisions which led him to become a qualified locksmith.
“I took a risk starting an apprenticeship, but I was insuring my family’s future.”
Certificate III in Locksmithing