Louie Murray is making big plans for the future after being named Construction Apprentice of the Year by East Riding College.
The 20-year-old is on course to complete his Level 3 Apprenticeship in Carpentry and Joinery later this month.
He has gained lots of valuable new skills on the job with G Colman Joinery while earning money at the same time to save up for his first home.
Louie is one of the successful products of Hudson Contract’s innovative scheme to create training opportunities for young people in seaside towns.
The family-owned business started sponsoring apprentices in 2011 in response to the lack of options for local teenagers to develop skills and careers in the building trade.
Hudson pays a wage contribution of £50 per person per week for the first year of training with local employers and has sponsored more than 170 apprentices to date.
Louie said: “I wasn’t sure what to do with my life when I left school. Then I got a summer job with Garry Colman and it opened my eyes to a career in construction.”
“I have learned communication skills, how to work with others, the importance of a work ethic, responsibility and time management.
“My friends at uni are partying all the time but now I have a job, four years’ experience and am looking at buying a house to do up using my skills and then sell for a profit.
“I want to keep on learning and in the longer term I want to become self-employed and maybe take on my own apprentice.
“My parents are really pleased with what I am doing and know the benefits of an apprenticeship. I have started doing my own work for family and friends.”
A panel of judges at East Riding College chose Louie for the award after he was nominated by G Colman Joinery, which is based Bridlington.
His college tutors also put forward supporting statements.
“Louie came along at exactly the right time for my business. He is now a real asset to us.
“A lot of small companies are scared of taking on an apprentice because of the cost but if you stick at it, it is worth it.”
Louie said he wants schools to make young people aware of all the options available to them – including apprenticeships.
“I hadn’t thought about an apprenticeship or joinery until I did the summer job with Garry. If you want to be hands-on, it is great.
“The opportunity to work with others has been great as well. I have really come out of my shell and have much more confidence meeting others in the trade and our customers.”