Water Workshop Mt Isa_1

Click here for photos of Physics in Flight at Spinifex State College.

Click here for photos of Water: Yours, Ours, Mine at Spinifex State College.

Click here for photos of Physics in Flight at Good Shepherd Catholic School.

Mount Isa students have soared to new heights this week as they explored the wonders of physics and chemistry at a series of Queensland Minerals and Energy Academy (QMEA) workshops.

With the support of Glencore Queensland Metals, Year 7 and 8 students from Spinifex State College and Good Shepherd Catholic College participated in two Physics in Flight competitions, and a Water: Yours, Ours, Mine workshop created by the QMEA, a partnership between the Queensland Government and the Queensland Resources Council (QRC).

QRC Director of Skills, Education and Diversity, Ms Katrina-Lee Jones said students put their engineering skills to the test as they competed in teams to build the ‘best’ paper plane with the longest flight time.

“Physics in Flight, a competition held in Gladstone and now in its fifth year, saw students delve into the various ways physics is used throughout the resources sector, such as drone technology, planning and scheduling, and site equipment customization,” Ms Jones said.

“The experience allowed students in the early years of senior school to explore how their science lessons translate to real-world applications, while learning about the different local careers available to them in science, technology, engineering, and maths (STEM).”

Glencore Manager, Human Resources and Training Mount Isa Mines, Fiona Pascoe said this program was a fantastic way for students to discover how the fundamental principles of physics are used every day in the resources and energy sector, under the guidance of experienced professionals from Glencore’s Mount Isa Mines.

“Having engineers mentor them throughout the day not only gives a real-world perspective on the importance of STEM learning, but it’s also valuable for the students to consider their feedback as they research, design, and test their paper planes, making adjustments to their prototypes based on expert knowledge,” Ms Pascoe said.

“We want the students to realise the skills they’ve learnt today have applications across a whole range of Glencore engineering and design projects, and that the future is bright if they’re interested in joining the resources sector workforce.”

Spinifex State College Principal, Mr Chris Pocock said students also participated in another QMEA workshop this week, focusing on water management and water treatment processes from a resources sector and community perspective.

“We love partnering with the QMEA to deliver invaluable learning experiences for our students, some of whom will make up the next generation of passionate STEM professionals,” Mr Pocock said.

“They were thrilled to have a bit of healthy competition as they competed in the Physics in Flight competition, and the Water: Yours, Ours, Mine workshop was a fantastic way for students to understand the importance of responsible water management using scientific knowledge they’ve learnt at school.”

As Australia’s largest and most successful industry-led education and schools 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 90 schools and is a partnership between the QRC and the Queensland Government under its Gateway to Industry Schools program.

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