Rewards for plumbing excellence

Three Victoria University plumbing apprentices were honoured with excellence awards by the Master Plumbers’ and Mechanical Services Association of Australia, as part of its 2009 industry awards. 

  • Ken Dunn, from the Macedon Ranges, received the City West Water Environment Award;
  • Daniel Clayton, 22, from Delahey, received the Heating and Cooling Association of Australia Encouragement Award;
  • Charlton Vella, 22, from Sydenham, received the Plumbing Industry Commission Encouragement Award, and was a Gold Medal Award finalist.

The awards were presented by Parliamentary Secretary for Planning, Jenny Mikakos, MP at the Melbourne Arts Centre on 15 July.

For more than 100 years, the awards have been a platform for nurturing and acknowledging talent, and rewarding the training achievements of apprentice plumbers.

Ken Dunn, who works at Fraser and Mountain Mechanical Services in Brunswick East, said his interest in the environment led to a pursuit to bring ‘green options’ in plumbing to the community.

“It is very rewarding to know that I can make a difference to our environment. Working as a plumber has been wonderful with gratifying results,” he said.

Ken plans to gain accreditation as a Green Plumber by further study of innovative concepts in sustainable plumbing.

Daniel Clayton, another employee at Fraser and Mountain, was inspired to work in the plumbing industry after visiting a trade school open day in Year 10.

He said winning the award was proof of his hard work, and demonstrated his skills and discipline to prospective employers.

Daniel said the best aspect of the job is that “no two days are the same”.

Charlton Vella said he developed a fascination with domestic construction sites while following tradesmen around his father’s building projects.

He now works at Melmarsh Plumbing in Melton, and hopes one day to start his own business.

“I now impart to apprentices the need to exceed client expectations at all times. I would rate this, coupled with thinking outside the square and working in with other tradesmen, as keys to success in this field," he said.

Parliamentary Secretary for Planning, Jenny Mikakos MP and Daniel Clayton with sponsors Paul Stirling, Australian Duct Manufacturer’s Alliance and Dean Burley, Heating and Cooling Association of Australia

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