Talented apprentice paints a bright future

Nineteen-year-old Jordan Borland from Cramlington was recognised for his painting and decorating skills and awarded a £100 cash prize at the regional heats of the Johnstone’s Young Painter of the Year competition.

He was invited to participate in the North East heats in Newcastle while studying a Level 2 Apprenticeship in Painting and Decorating at Gateshead College.

Now, as a regional winner, he will go through to the national final in November at Coventry's Ricoh Arenato see if his ability will be enough to secure the coveted ‘Young Painter of the Year’ prize.

He will join others from around the UK in completing a variety of tasks designed to test their skills in several key areas including preparation, application and the ability to work from a written specification.

Graham Lowery, Jordan’s tutor at Gateshead College, said: “Jordan really deserved to win this award. He has been a great asset to the college and is a fantastic example of how the college is successfully delivering tailored training that equips students with the skills that employers need.”

Jordan is currently employed by FSH Maintenance Ltd, where he has worked and trained on the job with a mentor.  

Managing director, Ian Wood, said: “Jordan is a great apprentice, one of the best we’ve had. He has great drive and determination, on top of his overall skills, which he picked up so quickly from his mentor. We are thrilled with his recent success in winning the award.”

Jordan commented: “Ian was really happy to take me on as an apprentice and I threw myself into the job.”

Jordan spends one day a week at Gateshead College’s Skills Academy for Construction, honing his decorating skills and learning trade techniques.

He said: “Since I started at Gateshead College I’ve accomplished so much and worked really hard to do well and prove myself in the industry.

“I really want to thank FSH Maintenance and Gateshead College who have mentored me through my time as an apprentice, which has helped me win this award.”

Gateshead College is renowned in the North East for its apprenticeships which provide work-based learning programmes for ambitious learners who are looking to gain hands-on training in their chosen industry, while studying at college.

The College’s Skills Academy for Construction provides trade courses such as plumbing, gas, electrical installation, brickwork, carpentry and joinery, painting and decorating and plastering with dedicated areas for each subject, and a Skills Academy for Automotive, Engineering, Manufacturing and Logistics.

Johnstone’s Painter of the Year is a painting and decorating competition that celebrates young talent, promotes best practice and encourages young people to pursue a career in the decorating industry.

The name Johnstone’s has been a presence in the UK paint market since 1890 and is part of the PPG portfolio of brands.

More at www.gateshead.ac.uk for information on courses.