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After 13 years in the army as a diesel mechanic being posted all over New Zealand, Lucas was ready to come home to the north and settle in one place for a while.
“Both my wife and I were keen to get back up here but I needed a job first and this opportunity came up at the right time. I teach the pre-trade course where students do unit standards towards their national trade certificate.”
‘”It’s great seeing the guys progress. Some come in not knowing anything about engineering and I watch their confidence build. Because the job makes use of my skills and knowledge I get a lot of job satisfaction. The systems and processes are similar to what I am used to, so the transition here has been easier than I thought.”
Lucas was worried how the students would respond to him. “In the army people listen because they have to. Here the students can leave. But I find I can be a positive influence on the young guys and they respect my trade experience and my lifestyle experience.”
“I’m still adjusting to being in a civilian environment and I’m learning a lot about teaching and the trade. At the NorthTec staff conference there was a strong push on values and that was pleasing to see. NorthTec is a big part of the Northland community.”
“My initial focus here will be consolidating my role within my immediate department and learning the ropes. Later I’d like to step up from pre-trade to higher level courses. Hopefully I can offer input into designing and running the courses, and maybe even help create additional new courses.”