From learner to teacher – passing the baton at Soar Print

June 29, 2023

Winning the Print Apprentice of the Year award in 2021 set Travis Jordan on a journey, and he’s now sharing his expertise, supervising and training apprentices in digital printing. In his corner with their full support is SCG, Travis’s Auckland employer.

“Training, upskilling and providing career pathways gives people pride and ownership. Additionally, it increases personal output and productivity for the business,” says SCG general manager Brian Landry.

“Travis took a lead role for us on the roll label print side early on, and when his supervisor left, he was appointed to the position. A former apprentice now supervising the younger learners is ideal as our trade is technical and hands-on. Travis is a well-spoken, self-motivated and inquisitive person who thrives on a challenge and gets a kick out of finding a way to do things. He is a great example to them.”

Travis sees his younger self in the two digital print apprentices he supervises. “The effort and passion I see going into their day-to-day work is very admirable. They have a real ‘give it a go’ attitude. They’re never afraid to put their hand up if they're unsure about something. It’s so important to not only trust your leader but for the leader to give time and respect to help people learn so that they can grow as individuals as well as help to grow the business.

“I look forward to seeing them produce great careers for themselves. They’re future stars of the industry.”

While he’s a supervisor now, Travis hasn’t completely thrown away his study books and says he “still craves learning new skills”. While qualified with his level 4 Certificate in Print, he has been encouraged to study towards his Level 5 Diploma in Print Management with Competenz Te Pūkenga.

Competenz Te Pūkenga Print Training Advisor and Assessor Grant Alsop, a 40-year veteran in the print industry, is working with three apprentices and two Diploma learners at SCG, developing their training plans in collaboration with Brian. He visits each learner every quarter and sets goals for them to achieve in the intervening time.

“The print industry offers a wide range of skills, including design, digital printing, offset printing, reel-fed printing, binding and finishing. These different areas can appeal to learners who want to develop computer skills in the digital and design area or more practical hands-on skills in traditional print. Print is a continually developing industry.”

Travis is a huge supporter of the apprenticeship ‘earn and learn’ model.

“Being offered an apprenticeship is a privilege. You have to earn it and show your employer your willingness to learn and adapt before the studying even starts. The earn-and-learn model serves such valuable life lessons. Being allowed to be a leader here at SCG has made me want to create a sustainable, clever and exciting working environment. The more diverse your skill set, the better you are as a tradesperson; that’s why sharing knowledge and communicating with those around you is greatly important.

“Ultimately, I want to see those I help teach reach their highest potential at work and as individuals and share my passion for our industry.”

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