• Occupation: Carpenter
  • Country of work: UK
  • Scholarship provided by: MBAV in 2010

Jake was raised in Horsham, Victoria and completed his apprenticeship as a carpenter in 2005 at the age of 19. He had built his own house by the time he was 23 and after gaining an AOF Scholarship in 2010, he spent the next six months gaining commercial building experience in Geelong. He then travelled to the UK where, despite the difficult economic conditions just after the GFC, he had a job within 2 days of his arrival.

He worked mainly in London with two different construction companies over the next two years gaining skills in structural engineering, heritage restoration, refurbishment, fit out, contractor management and client relations. Job sites included Twickenham Rugby Stadium, Google headquarters in Buckingham Palace Rd and the National Theatre on the Thames in Southbank.

The typical working week was 75 hours over 6 days and did not pay very well but the work was challenging and provided intense experience in commercial construction. Despite the tight funds, Jake travelled extensively in Europe in his holidays with his girlfriend. The resulting exposure to different customs, cultures and languages proved to be a very rewarding part of his overseas experience.

On returning to Australia in 2013, Jake was offered a Site Manager’s position with Lyons Construction in Geelong and was responsible for the $10m Police and SES complex at Waurn Ponds. His next job was a $3.3m training complex which was completed in October 2015 and he is currently completing an $18m aged care facility in Torquay. In 2016 Jake was appointed a board member of the Australian Overseas Foundation and is an active member on one sub-committee.