Tradies Day_Glencore MIM

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Cutting-edge virtual technology was just one gadget among many that a group of Grade 10 students today (23 June) tried out as they participated in a Tradies for a Day workshop delivered by the Queensland Minerals and Energy Academy (QMEA), which is the education arm of the Queensland Resources Council (QRC).

Thanks to support from Glencore Queensland Metals, about 20 students from Kirwan and Pimlico state high schools, and Ignatius Park College rotated through different trade-based activities replicating a variety of exciting and highly in-demand trade roles that the resources sector has to offer.

QMEA Manager – Skills and Education, Mr Matthew Heskett said the welding simulator was a “clear favourite” among the cohort today.

“A nation-wide skills shortage in resources combined with the industry’s increasing demand for trade-based employees means there has never been a better time for students to consider a rewarding career in the resources and energy sector,” Mr Heskett said.

“Work experience and learning from industry representatives can be invaluable for students at a pivotal stage of their schooling journey, when they are weighing up their career options and also considering their interests and passions.

“Trade-based roles can be challenging for young adults to explore on a trial basis because of stringent health and safety requirements, limited access to typically expensive equipment and the need to be mentored by an expert.

“This workshop allows students to sample some exciting, trade-based activities in a safe classroom environment while under the watchful guidance of Glencore Queensland Metals apprentices and tradespeople.”

Glencore Zinc Assets Australia General Manager Human Resources, Clint Milner said investing in the next generation will contribute to ensuring the future workforce is highly skilled and prepared for the mines of tomorrow.

“Glencore Queensland Metals is an active member of the Townsville community, delivering natural resources of enduring value to modern society. We also prioritise employing from the local talent pool to ensure we’re creating value for the regions in which we operate.

“We are proud to be partnering with the QMEA to deliver this workshop, which we hope will encourage local students to pursue a training pathway to a rewarding career in our organisation and the broader resources sector.”

Kirwan State High School Principal, Ms Heather Murry said students were eager to complement their classroom learning with some dynamic, hands-on activities that simulate real-world applications.

“After they leave school, we know not all of our students want to go to university and will instead choose a training pathway, leading them to career in a trade-based role,” Ms Murry said.

“This workshop not only allows the students to trial some trade professions, but it also connects them with industry experts working in local companies that actively recruit for apprenticeships and traineeships.”

As Australia’s largest and most successful industry-led education and schools training initiative, the QMEA seeks to broaden student and teacher knowledge of career opportunities in resources.

The academy encourages a talent pipeline of employees into vocational and professional careers, with a focus on female and Indigenous participation. The QMEA currently engages with over 90 schools and is a partnership between the QRC and the Queensland Government under its Gateway to Industry Schools program.

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