WPC Group Apprentice Saxon Berry has been awarded a $15,000 Bert Evans Scholarship to support him throughout his Light Vehicle Apprenticeship at Memorial Automotive.
The Bert Evans Apprentice Scholarships were launched in 2014 to assist hardworking, positive apprentices who have demonstrated hardship in their personal circumstances and need additional financial support.
Knowing 20-year-old Saxon’s circumstances, his WPC Group Mentor, Nicole Lean, told him about the scholarship opportunity and encouraged him to apply.
“I just thought it would be good because I needed help at the time,” Saxon says. “I was living at home alone for a little bit looking after my 10-year-old sister, so I thought the money would help.”
Saxon remembers the phone call when he found out that he had been awarded the scholarship.
“When I heard I’d won, it was a lot of stress relief. It meant I could actually afford to pay for things, because I was struggling quite a lot before,” Saxon says.
The scholarship is worth $5,000 each year for up to three years. The money can be spent on anything to do with the apprentice’s trade. So far, Saxon has used the money to fix his car, which he needs to get to and from work, and to upgrade his toolbox, as it was too small.
Saxon’s Mentor, Nicole, says he is a deserving scholarship recipient.
“Saxon is a hardworking individual and has excelled through his apprenticeship so far. Whilst he has been in his apprenticeship, he has had many personal hiccups he has overcome and has done so whilst still working fulltime and showing his all within his apprenticeship. He is a quiet achiever, and doesn’t like to boast about his achievements, however this is definitely one that he should celebrate,” Nicole says.
Saxon is currently halfway through the second year of his apprenticeship, and is enjoying learning new things, and gaining extra responsibilities over time.
“I’m learning heaps of different things about the trade and working on lots of different cars,” he says.
Upon finishing his apprenticeship, Saxon plans to upskill further and eventually work in the mines as a Diesel Mechanic.
He says the scholarship has helped him a lot already and will continue to help him as he progresses in his apprenticeship and beyond.