Prime Ministers Vocational Excellence Award 2020

11 Nov 2020

Vocational education is education and training that helps students develop the skills, knowledge and attributes they need to perform a specific role and to develop an exciting career in a particular vocational industry. Launched in 2019, the Prime Ministers Vocational Excellence Award celebrates the achievement of secondary students enrolled in vocational programmes.

This award recognises and celebrates the value of vocational education in young peoples’ lives across New Zealand, awarding the top Year 12 or 13 secondary student enrolled in vocational programmes of learning with a monetary prize. Only one student is eligible per school or wharekura.

Max Loh 13B13 is an extremely deserving nominee for the Prime Ministers Vocational Excellence Award in 2020.  He has demonstrated excellence and achievement in vocational education during this year and he is our winner of this prize for 2020.

Max excels in the Level 3 vocational subjects at BDSC of Food and Hospitality and Food Technology. He is top of his class for both subjects. Despite his obvious talent, Max is always willing to stop what he is doing to support his peers and help them when they are struggling. He continually mentors his classmates and offers them help. He is an extremely humble and considerate young man.

Max has many other fine personal qualities that make him a wonderful asset in a busy working kitchen. He is always reliable and responsible, approaching tasks with maturity and is responsible with health and safety measures in place.  He works well under pressure, demonstrating exceptional self-management.  Max is respectful of his peers and school staff members, generous with his time and resources, and shows kindness, caring and empathy towards others.

Max has volunteered to participate in every single after hours catering event at BDSC. He is always willing to donate his time and give service to the school, in order to gain experience in an area for which he is so passionate.

His passion of cooking goes beyond the classroom! In his spare time, Max researches recipes and practices them. Once he has perfected a recipe, he records a video tutorial and uploads this to his YouTube channel for others to learn from. (Here is a link to his most recent YouTube video: He also has an Instagram page where he posts pictures of his latest creations and food adventures.

Max participated in the online NZSSC (New Zealand Secondary Schools Challenge) during the first lock down where he won 2 out of the 4 weeks entries for his cooking submissions.

Max is also involved in the Chinese lion dance group and has been a senior leader coaching Level 1 students on outdoor education trips.

Max has been selected to study at Le Cordon Bleu Wellington in 2021 and he is taking the Grand Diplome (which is a combination of 9 months French cuisine and 9 months French patisserie) to get a certification for a Grand Diplome. These qualifications can be used by Max to advance his career, with the goal to be a chef in the highest professional kitchens.


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