11 Jan 2016
Draughtsman, Wayne Grant, didn’t know anything about the forestry industry when he returned from Australia with a young family, all he knew was he wanted a more hands-on career.
Inspired by a timber machinist friend, he soon enrolled at Waiariki on the Certificate in Timber Machining, to study at the only operational training saw mill in New Zealand.
“I didn’t realise how much of a timber town Rotorua was and I just wanted to get involved as fast as possible,” says Wayne.
“Waiariki was unbelievable. They covered every process of the timber industry - cell structures of trees, laminating and more."
Speaking about our Waipa campus training mill, Wayne feels it was not until he got into the forestry industry that he realised how important its existence is.
“The training mill is brilliant, everything there is hands on. It is very difficult to teach an apprentice in a productive factory. At Waipa, all the machines are dedicated to training, so you can shut them down and slowly go through things, even if it takes you a week. You can learn real life timber machining, on real timber, at a pace you can control.”
Graduating straight from Waiariki into employment, he states that everyone he met upon his qualification have shared the same success.
Now Head Timber Machinist at Lockwood in Rotorua, Wayne can't speak highly enough about his current employer.
“Lockwood has been just great. It’s a brilliant company.
"It’s fun to control big, powerful machines and take someone’s drawing through to finished product, productively and at high quality. It is very satisfying to think “Wow I’ve done all that – I made the knives, I made the profiles.
"Timber machining is a very technical trade but don’t be scared. It is a secure industry and most machinists are happy to help you. It’s the people that make the industry."
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Page last updated: 02 May 2017