Ross McIntyre has been named Rotorua's top building apprentice at the New Zealand Certified Builders Apprentice Challenge.

The competition was fierce last weekend and the challenge received a large amount of entries nationwide, including a record number of entries from female apprentices.

Apprentices were given just eight hours to create a park seat from detailed construction plans.

The park seats were assessed by a panel of expert judges on workmanship, measuring, cutting and assembly, with McIntyre's park seat receiving the highest overall score.

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The park seats crafted by apprentices will be donated to their respective regional Cancer Society divisions, including the accommodation services offered by the society.

McIntyre, 39, is in the second year of his building apprenticeship at Oswald Construction Ltd.

As the regional winner he takes home a range of trade tools courtesy of sponsor ITM, and will move forward to represent Rotorua at the NZCB Apprentice Challenge Final to be
held at the NZCB Annual Conference in Christchurch from June 14 to 15.

McIntyre will face 19 other regional winners from around the country to compete for the Ken Read Memorial Trophy and $50,000 in prizes.

NZCB Chief Executive Grant Florence was impressed with the skill, talent and passion the
carpentry apprentices demonstrated – a testament to their dedication, employer support and the comprehensive training provided by the Industry Training Association Building scheme.

"The future of New Zealand's building industry is dependent on a robust pipeline of top-quality apprentices. Fostering and encouraging young talent is a responsibility NZCB takes seriously.

"We encourage our member builders to take on apprentices, as it creates a pathway into the industry and ensures the sector can meet the increasing demand for trade-qualified, highly skilled and well-rounded building professionals," Florence said.

More comprehensive than other apprentice training schemes and programmes, the ITAB
apprenticeship scheme provides over four years of extensive practical experience and solid theoretical training, setting apprentices up for a successful career in the building industry with a broad set of professional skills.