YEARS of commitment to seeing apprentices reach their potential has earned Gympie builder Mark Buchanan the Master Builders Queensland award for apprentice employer of the year.
Mr Buchanan has been in the construction business for almost a decade and has had own business, MLB Design and Construction for six years.
He received the award at the end of three-and-a-half years teaching Queensland Apprentice of the Year, and some-one he now calls a mate, Lachlan Kenman.
Mr Buchanan hosted Mr Kenman for the full term of his apprenticeship and is helping him complete his apprenticeship to become a fully qualified builder.
Mr Buchanan, who has trained four apprentices, said he was happy to receive the award for a part of his job he enjoyed doing.
He said the first year with an apprentice in tow could be demanding as they learnt the basics, however he enjoyed sharing his knowledge.
"You definitely put effort into it," he said.
He said the rewarding process gave youngsters who wanted to learn a good chance at improving their confidence and skills on the job.
"You get out what you put in," he said.
The need to teach young tradies new skills was partly responsible for making Mr Buchanan keen to educate more.
He said without established tradies giving young apprentices a go, the industry was likely to face a serious skills shortage.
Mr Buchanan was named the Queensland Master Builders Apprentice Employer of the Year last week after winning the Sunshine Coast award earlier this year.