This is an extraordinary achievement for the twenty-five year old from Trafalgar East, and an excellent example for women in typically male-dominant industries.
“As an organization, training and apprenticeships form an important part of the future of Citywide and it is fantastic to see Rebecca and Sam do so well. I am delighted to see them achieve the highest honors in the arboriculture field and they have our best wishes and support in their respective careers ahead,” said Kerry Osbourne, managing director of Citywide Services Solutions.
Ms Barnes has always loved science and sports in school, and after working indoors for several years, decided on a more hands-on job outdoors. Ms Barnes loves the constant learning opportunities and endless amount of knowledge when it comes to trees, and would love to contribute to that knowledge.
Her interests also include sustainable landscaping - in particular, effective tree pruning with considerations to root interactions, and the overall effect on tree health. She plans to begin the Diploma of Arboriculture in 2011 with hopes to complete a PHD in the future. Initially, Ms Barnes worked in Environmental Services looking after carbon offset tree plots and grew an interest in how trees function and grow. Her ever-growing interest in trees has led her to completing a short course in landscaping where she has found horticulture to be her passion.
After consulting a chainsaw instructor at TAFE, Ms Barnes found the Arboriculture course perfect for her love of science and enjoyment of the outdoors. “I did a bit of research about tree work and found Citywide on the 'net, and applied straight away,” says Ms Barnes.
“I have been there for just over two years now and with the help and guidance of the great group of guys that work at the Citywide depot, I have completed my apprenticeship.” “I found it physically tough at first, but with a bit of help from the guys in the beginning, I grew some muscles and now love to get stuck into work. I learnt very quickly that technique can be more important than strength,” Ms Barnes explained.
“Citywide has been especially supportive of me, particularly in the early stages and I am thankful for being given the chance. Being the only girl can be tiring on the rare occasion but I love the family culture at work and the guys all make me feel like part of the crew. I hope to stay part of the team as long as Citywide will have me.”
Rebecca is just one of a new generation of young people getting a head start in a successful trade career starting at school.
The Citywide apprenticeship and traineeship program aims to consistently engage and manage apprentices and trainees in the relevant business units, and conveys our commitment to staff training and development, with the aim of retaining employees in the organisation.