Former W-League footballer, Trudy Camilleri who last played for Sydney FC, Central Coast Mariners and Western Sydney Wanderers during a seven-year career has turned her love of cars into a career.
Trudy is now passing her skills to the next generation of auto body repairers as a teacher at TAFE NSW Ultimo.
While still at school, Trudy started to develop her automotive skills working part-time in the family car restoration business.
Trudy planned to be a car engine builder once she had left school, but as the business needed an auto body repair technician this is the road she took.
Trudy has been surrounded by cars her whole life.
It was very normal for her to be in the shed helping and working on cars after school, and on the weekend with her father. As soon as Trudy turned 15, she secured two part-time jobs whilst juggling school and playing professional football for the Central Coast Mariners.
It was when Trudy was in year 10, that she secured an apprenticeship as a panel beater and commenced studying at TAFE NSW Campbelltown under the guidance of her teacher, Frank Goodlad.
“I really enjoyed the learning environment at TAFE NSW, and was amazed how well I took to the experience compared to school. It was most likely because I was doing something I really believed I was meant to do. With my Dad as a mentor and a best friend, he taught me everything I know about cars today. At that time, I had a more mature head than you might expect from someone in their mid-twenties.
“I had a little bit of direction in terms of the path I wanted to go down, but hadn’t really decided on anything concrete. I just knew it had to involve cars.”
After a few family matters, and completing a Certificate II in Automotive and Marine Trimming Technology, Trudy decided she wanted more of a challenge, so reached out to TAFE NSW to see what automotive teaching positions may be available. The stars aligned as Trudy secured an auto body teaching role at TAFE NSW Ultimo, which is where she focuses her energy and passion today.
When not teaching, Trudy is restoring cars and completing her Certificate III in Automotive Refinishing Technology at TAFE NSW Campbelltown. Some of the projects Trudy is currently working on includes a HK Holden Kingswood, her Holden FE Panel Van and 2009 Harley-Davidson Fat Boy motorcycle.
Over the next three years to 2022, the Commonwealth Government forecasts an extra 100,000 jobs for Australia’s automotive industry. The prediction reveals a lack of skilled workers which will drive demand for occupations including motor vehicle and parts salespeople, motor mechanics, vehicle parts and accessories fitters, panel beaters, vehicle painters, vehicle body builders and trimmers and automotive electricians.
TAFE NSW Ultimo Autobody Repair and Finish head teacher Garry Clear said that since joining the TAFE NSW Ultimo teaching section Trudy has found the experience interesting and challenging.
“Trudy has gained the respect of students and just goes from strength to strength. She has all the skills, determination, and is focused on the future. Trudy has something special. She is full of confidence, passionate about cars and teaching the technicians of tomorrow.”
Trudy is a former Regional WorldSkills Australia Autobody Repair Gold Medalist and mentored 33 competitors at the 2018 National WorldSkills competition.
To find out more about studying automotive courses at TAFE NSW phone 13 16 01 or visit www.tafensw.edu.au
“Be a Game changer”, get involved with the Official Education Partner of Football NSW now as TAFE NSW offers over 1,200 courses with a wide range of study options from online courses to diplomas and degrees, training and full-time education for more info log onto @TAFE NSW #Work. #Study. #Play. #FollowYourPassion #BeAmbitious
Source – TAFE NSW Website