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Cabinet making apprentice ready to take on the country's best

3 August 2023

Cabinet making apprentice Lewis Italiano is ready to put his skills to the test on the big stage at WorldSkills Nationals later this month.

While keen to see Melbourne for the first time, Lewis is mainly excited to have the opportunity to compete against the top cabinet making apprentices across the country on such a grand scale.

Having found enjoyment in building things from a young age, it was no surprise that Lewis took a keen interest in woodworking during his high school years.

“The whole building process; from the design, creation, to the final product, is something that brings me great satisfaction,” Lewis said.

Now, completing a Certificate III in Cabinet Making with TAFE, and working in industry at Studio Milton since December 2021, Lewis is enjoying learning the art of creating bespoke custom furniture pieces.

Lewis has been training intensely in the lead up to the national competition. He has already completed two training projects. This process starts with creating a plan from an isometric drawing of the project and carries all the way through to construction from the plan. Lewis will be working on another project before he sets off to Melbourne.

His training has also included practising the cutting and assembly of components, creating joints such as dovetails and bridle joints, and veneering. All the training in the lead up to WorldSkills is designed to be a mock test of what our competitors will face come competition day. 

It is an amazing feeling knowing that he is going to be representing TAFE, the South West, and WA at the national competition. Having taught him for the last 18 months or so I can see that he has every chance to do well at the competition,” Cabinet Making Lecturer and past WorldSkills international competitor Nick Johnston said.

Lewis has been heavily supported by his workplace throughout his WorldSkills training. Studio Milton owner Paul Milton has provided Lewis with full access to the workshop after hours to train including providing materials and other resources for him to use.

On top of this, the entire Studio Milton team will be heading over to Melbourne to support Lewis at the national competition!

“Paul has been very helpful and supportive in my WorldSkills journey so far... for all of this I am very appreciative” Lewis said.

“My lecturer, Nick Johnston, has also been very supportive of my WorldSkills journey too. He was the person to initially encourage me to sign up for the regional competition”.

WorldSkills is a great opportunity for Lewis to showcase his skills and go toe to toe with the other apprentices around the country, Nick said.

He will get so much out of participating in the Nationals as I know that I did when I was a competitor.”

WorldSkills is a huge event for all involved. It takes a massive amount of effort and commitment from the students, lecturers, and training staff to prepare and compete in all levels of the WorldSkills competitions.

Nick and Lewis both strongly encourage anyone who has the opportunity to compete in a regional competition next year to get involved and give it a go.

The WorldSkills nationals competition will take place from 17 August to 19 August at Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre.

You can see the whole South Regional TAFE Team WA competitors list here.