Mount Annan mum named one of state's top tradies

Karyn Downs was also the 2019 apprentice of the year.
Karyn Downs was also the 2019 apprentice of the year.

Karyn Downs didn't let becoming a mother of two stop her from completing her electrical apprenticeship.

The talented Mount Annan woman has raised her children while finishing training and picking up a few awards along the way.

Ms Downs has taken out the award for Woman in a non-Traditional Trade Award at the 2019 NSW Training Awards held last week at the Sydney Town Hal.

She said she chose the electrical industry and training path for various reasons including being a hands-on learner and a love of working outdoors.

"A friend who was an apprentice with Endeavour Energy told me all about what he was doing and learning and I knew straight away this was a job I'd love to do," she said.

"I want to be a great apprentice and a role model for other women who may be told it's not a woman's job.

"I didn't realise there were few women in the industry doing this role and when some people said it's not a girl's job, I took it as a challenge to prove them wrong."

Camden MP Peter Sidgreaves congratulated Ms Downs.

He said she was honoured for her dual trades in the Electricity Supply Industry (ESI) - the main trade in Power Systems Distribution and also in ESI Power Systems Cable Joining - and her on-the-job training with Endeavour Energy.

"As the only woman in her apprentice cohort, Karyn has been a fantastic ambassador for women in trades," Mr Sidgreaves said.

"It's a fantastic achievement to excel in an apprenticeship, in a fast paced, high risk industry, while juggling the challenge of raising two children.

"She is a shining example of what can be achieved by a young woman in a trade when you put your shoulder to the wheel or in this case an electricity distribution network."

Ms Downs also won the 2019 South Western Sydney Apprentice of the Year award earlier this year.

She encouraged other young people to pick up a trade.

"While my apprenticeship has been challenging, I have received great support from my trainers and colleagues and encouraged to take up every opportunity," she said.

"If you believe in yourself and persevere you can achieve anything.

"This doesn't apply just to women but to all young people when choosing their career."

Ms Downs is currently based at Narellan Field Service Centre and has recently commenced her trade as a line worker and cable joiner for Endeavour Energy.