After studying jewellery making at Geraldton Senior High School, Anaya Moncrieff was relieved to find her niche. “I hate the thought of sitting and staring at a computer or sheets of paper day in, day out,” she says. Then 17, Ms Moncrieff told her mum it was the only subject at school she enjoyed, and the next day a staff member at her school handed her a job advertisement from Leon Baker Jewellers, a local company looking for an apprentice jeweller. Now 20, she will finish her apprenticeship with Leon Baker in January, and the development of her skills has materialised into her being selected to represent WA at the WorldSkills national championship competition in Melbourne next week. The Geraldton local was one of four selected to attend the competition that celebrates young people finding their passion in vocational work and trades. “Jewellery making is a bit of a dying art. I’m really happy I’ve found it,” Ms Moncrieff said. The Statewide competition required tradespeople to complete the same project and submit it to a board to grade it. Ms Moncrieff placed second, and will compete at the Melbourne Exhibition and Convention Centre next week on August 17, where she will be shown a design one hour before she is expected to complete the project and submit it for grading. “It’s still sinking in to be honest. I was shocked to find out that I had been selected to represent WA and it feels more like a dream than reality,” she said. Completing her course remotely from North Metropolitan TAFE, the apprentice said she loved her job because of the creative licence she had, working with clients to design pieces then seeing them come to fruition. Ms Moncrieff said she had found some of the work to be emotional, as jewellery was often inherited and held sentimental value. “I’ve found more than a few times I’ll start tearing up along side clients. It’s almost impossible to not get emotional knowing that you’ve really given them something that they’ll treasure,” she said. Winners at the national championships are given the opportunity to travel internationally to compete on a global scale against their selected trades.