The students make the junior size sawhorses to hone their skills in using and sharpening hand tools such as saws, planes and chisels.
Joinery tutor Huw Morgan says the students start making two saw horses, one of which they take home, when they are about three weeks in to the course. They are assessed on their ability to make a full size saw horse within a six-hour time frame, although when they are out of their apprenticeship, he says they will be expected to make one within two hours.
The class of 2021 is unusual this year as about half the students on the NMIT joinery programme are female. More and more females are entering the industry – as fully qualified or apprentice joiners—and workplaces are also wanting to employ more female joiners.
Joinery is a skilled trade which involves creating items such as staircases, windows, doors, and furniture within a workshop, and a carpenter will then install the items on site.
NMIT has also previously made and donated playhouses to kindergartens in Stoke and Golden Bay.