SPARKPLUG: New Zealand electrical apprentice of the year winner Alex Tyson, 25, with his boss, Glenn Roberts Electrical owner Josh Roberts. Photo: Andrew Board.

Local apprentice is NZ’s best


Nelson sparkie Alex Tyson has been crowned as the best apprentice electrician in the country.

Alex, who works for Glenn Roberts Electrical, made it through to the national finals in the commercial/domestic category of the ECANZ Apprentice of the Year Award after the preliminary finals in Wellington. There he beat out the six other competitors by completing challenges including first aid, pricing jobs and installing a home automation system.

He says he was “shocked but stoked” with the win after failing to place in the same competition last year. “I entered it last year and made the finals but didn’t place so I thought since I was still an apprentice I’d give it another go.”

It wasn’t all roses for Alex though, he says he was almost tripped up on the last task of the day.

“There was this stupid door bell. It was the last thing I had to do and it just would not work for me. It was just a little white box, it was the most frustrating bit. It was just two wires, I got it going, that was fine. Then they threw in an alteration in the last hour and here’s me, everything else was done, all the complicated stuff was done, it was just two wires that were tripping me up.”

Alex won cash, vouchers and tools as part of his prize package, as well as a 21 day course with Outward Bound from which he has just returned. He started with Glenn Roberts four years ago this month and says he should finish his apprenticeship early next year.

His boss Josh Roberts says he is proud of Alex and pleased to know that the business is on the right track with training staff. “It’s a great achievement and we’re all very happy for him.”