GREATER Taree City Council celebrated three award-winning employees and sponsored the Aboriginal achievement award at Wednesday night's award ceremony at Taree TAFE.
Council's innovative existing worker traineeship program saw 17 staff take on Certificate III level studies in civil construction in 2012. Three of those students on the awards night were recognised by TAFE at their annual awards ceremony last week.
"I commend the work of all of our infrastructure services graduates and congratulate our award winners," mayor Paul Hogan said.
"We were pleased to support and encourage our staff this year to get their Certificate III in civil construction".
Council's initiative to establish the program and provide on-the-job support and resources to complete studies and assessments has provided a unique opportunity for staff to build new skills and have existing skills recognised.
The process has also reinforced the civil construction capability of council, and has expanded to both certificate III and IV levels this year.
The three council staff members receiving accolades were Jeff Aquilina and Peter Platz receiving awards for excellence and Ray Kirby receiving the encouragement award.
"All sides benefit from the education provided through Taree TAFE," council's general manager, Gerard Jos said. "Council gets a better workforce as a result, and staff have greater opportunities for their career futures."
"We congratulate Jeff, Peter and Ray for their awards, and all the staff who attained their qualifications through the program," the mayor said. "I am confident we will have continued success of this initiative."
The annual TAFE student Aboriginal achievement award is also sponsored by Greater Taree City Council.
"I was proud to present the 2013 certificate of congratulations to Aden Avery," Cr Hogan said.
"We are pleased to be able to sponsor this award each year," Mr Jos said.
"We take seriously our commitment to Aboriginal Australians, and our sponsorship of this award is part of that commitment to offer dignified recognition, and respect for the rights, responsibilities and heritage of local indigenous Australians, along with all Australians.
"Council actively encourages Aboriginal and non-indigenous Australians to work together for a just, harmonious and progressive society."