2016 Ern MacDonald Fellowship: Who came out on top?

History was made last month as two extraordinary young people were announced the joint winners of the 2016 Ern MacDonald Fellowship.


  • Sharlene Kidd, Perth North Region
  • Peter Ives, Hunter Region


  • Sam Glisson, Ballarat Wimmera Region


  • Harley Clements, Perth North Region
  • Daniel Conaghan, Sydney West Region

The Ern MacDonald Fellowship was established by Dusselldorp Foundation founder, Dick Dusseldorp in honour of the building industry stalwart.  Ern MacDonald was a long-time advocate for trade and skill-based careers during his over four decades of work in the construction industry, acting as the driving force in the creation of Group Apprenticeships Schemes through the ACTU-Lend Lease Foundation.

The winners of the Fellowship were announced at a presentation ceremony held on Friday, 29 April at the Mercure Hotel, Sydney.  Ern MacDonald’s daughter, Kate MacDonald had the pleasure of presenting the award.

“As in previous years, it is a hard decision identifying the recipient of the Fellowship,” says Kate.  “It’s quite a rigorous process, as there are three steps they have to go through: First, there’s an initial application which is reviewed, then those selected to progress complete a second, more detailed application form.  Five applicants are selected and flown to Sydney for a three panel interview.”

“What a fantastic and surprising result we have witnessed with a first – two winners for the 6th Ern MacDonald Scholarship,” says WorldSkills Australia Interim CEO, Brigitte Collins.  “Both Sharlene Kidd and Peter Ives have already shown what fantastic role models they are for trades and apprenticeships in their roles as 2015 Skillaroo and 2015 BBM Recipient respectively, and we look forward to hearing about their projects from the scholarship funds.

“Congratulations to all 5 finalists, who were of the highest standard. We look forward to your continued involvement with WorldSkills.”