Keeping it in the family

When Angel Papp was growing up she didn’t think she would ever be working at her family’s automotive business let alone completing an apprenticeship in automotive electronics. However, after returning from travelling overseas and needing a job she began working in the office at her dad’s workshop, Onroad Automotive & Electrical Engineering in Porirua. Angel is now completing MITO’s New Zealand Certificate in Automotive Electrical Engineering and enjoying every minute.

Angel has been working in the office for nearly four years and after constant conversations with customers always asking for the mechanics to explain things, she wanted to be able to do that herself. “I wanted to get qualified to have the knowledge and be able to communicate with our customers on what we are doing and what the issues are.”

Karl Papp, Angel’s dad and owner of Onroad Automotive hopes that Angel completing her apprenticeship will give her the automotive skills to take over the family business. “Hopefully she can take over the business if that’s what she wants to do. She’s done her business management course already and now doing her apprenticeship, it’s a prime opportunity for her to take over.”

Angel Papp and her dad Karl Papp both working at Onroad Automotive & Electrical Engineering.

From talking with Angel it is apparent that her family and helping out where she can is important to her, so by completing this apprenticeship she can continue to do this. “Before I started my apprenticeship, I would help dad when I could on the workshop floor, however I couldn’t really do much. Now as I am going through my apprenticeship it gives me the opportunity to help him more, if he is super busy.”

Angel started her apprenticeship in March 2022 and is really enjoying the programme so far. “Growing up I didn’t think I would be completing an automotive electrical apprenticeship and working in the family business isn’t something I thought I would ever do. To be doing it now really shows anything can happen.” When talking about her apprenticeship Angel says she enjoys the practical element of the programme, “I am really enjoying the course and like the hands-on aspect of the apprenticeship, I find it’s the easiest way to learn.”

Angel says that the help she receives from her MITO Training Advisor Richard Hainsworth has made the transition into her apprenticeship quite easy. “If I have any questions or any concerns it is really easy to touch base with Richard and ask him questions, he gives me clear guidelines on what I can and cannot do.”

While completing her apprenticeship Angel still manages to juggle the office work as well. “I run the day-to-day operations of the business and when I can I try to squeeze time in on the workshop floor. It can be a bit full on juggling both the office and workshop, but all in all I am enjoying what I am doing.” When asking Angel which side of the job she prefers doing now, her answer is “the mechanical side. I enjoy the business side as I get to talk to the customers, but sometimes the mechanical side is better.”

Although her dad hopes Angel will one day take over the family business, Angel just wants to define excellence, “I just want to be good at what I do and be good in the industry so that when someone can’t fix the issue, they know that we can. Running the business is the end goal but I am not 100% sure if that is something I want to do yet. I am just enjoying what I am doing now.”

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