LIA awards South Australian graduates

Rebecca Wright of Print SA has won the South Australian Lithographic Institute of Australia (LIA) Graduate of the Year Award.

Print industry professionals, apprentices, their friends and family gathered at the Fuji Xerox showroom in King William Street to celebrate the four graduates: Mark Noy from Insignius, Taylah O’Brien from Hanson Design and Print, Demi Samaras of Multi Color SA, and the winner, Rebecca Wright from Print SA.

Wright says, “I was a bit shocked, but the win got me excited for this year. I do graphic design, and run the digital printer here, a Ricoh C7110 that was installed in September, with a Plockmatic booklet maker running inline.

“Both my parents were in printing, so my mum found me the apprenticeship. But it is hard to get young people in print, as I feel like smaller business are starting to fall off, especially in South Australia.

“People studying graphic design do not understand that print is a great industry to be working in. Targeting people that are studying at university might be a good way.

“TAFE seems to be more hands on, with people attending more likely to go into the industry.

“I do not know any other young people in print, I only really met them while accepting the award.”

Gordon Wilson, president, LIA South Australia says, “Whilst the number of graduates were down, due to the demise of training opportunities for print and Print Communications Certificates in SA, the night was a great success for the finalists. The support from industry was strong and served as a great opportunity for the graduates to meet other peers.”

The two previous National Graduate Winners gave a presentation to the audience, explaining the award process and how it has helped their career. In 2017 Chloe Rudd was awarded the LIA-Visual Connections National Graduate Prize and Jason Turai won the LIA–Printing Industries Future Leaders Award.

Mel Ireland, Federal President said, "SA continues to develop an extremely high standard of graduates. The industry support in the region is phenomenal. Gordon Wilson is such a great driver and motivator for the LIA in SA. His passion for the industry and for supporting new entrants to the industry is second to none. We look forward to 2019 being another great year of graduates being recognised around the country."

The biennial National Graduate Awards, where the state-based winners compete, will be held later this year.

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