Matthew Cheso Region: Adelaide
I am in the third year of my apprenticeship and am 21. I live in Wellington, SA and work for Matt Bissell, in his business Adelaide Hills Bricklaying. Daniel Richards was my employer for my first 2.5 years of my apprenticeship but due to a shortage of work, I transferred employers. I won the SA State WorldSkills title while I was still with Daniel Richards Bricklaying. The TAFE I attend is Gilles Plains.
I am excited but at the same time a little nervous about the Nationals. To prepare, I’ll be practising different bricklaying techniques at my TAFE and just working everyday laying bricks helps too. I entered the Regional competition because my TAFE lecturer asked me if I would be interested. I thought I would give it a go and I’m glad I did!
I didn’t exactly choose bricklaying – bricklaying chose me. I wanted an apprenticeship in a building trade and I put my interest out. I was thankfully, approached by my first boss Daniel Richards asking if I wanted an apprenticeship in bricklaying so I took it! I enjoy bricklaying and feel good when looking back on the finished product knowing you’ve built that and it looks good.
I’d say the person who has given me the most guidance so far is Colin Sontag. He’s been a top bricklayer for around 40 years in SA and has been a big part of my apprenticeship. He has taught me ‘the tricks of the trade’. I don’t really have a specific hero but my Grandfather Oscar Cheso is 93 and still out working on the family farm. I rate that!