About 80 local students will today learn there’s a lot more to powering our homes and businesses than just flicking a switch.

Students from The Cathedral College, Rockhampton Girls Grammar School and North Rockhampton State High School will get together to learn about different generation sources and how electricity gets to market via the National Energy Grid (NEG).

The event is being conducted by the Queensland Minerals and Energy Academy (QMEA), in collaboration with QUT Science and Engineering Ambassadors, who have flown up from Brisbane for the day.

“Students will work in teams to understand the grid, while using real-time online data to see the practicalities of the domestic energy market,” said Rockhampton Girls Grammar Principal Michelle Gouge.

“It’ll be a fantastic exercise in critical thinking for the students, which will bring some of the classroom work to life,” she said.

“It’s also very helpful for the students to be able to speak directly to people working in the industry, and understand some of the career opportunities, and how to jump onto those pathways.”

Students will be mentored by staff from Hastings Deering and Coronado Curragh, as well as the QUT ambassadors.

“It’s really pleasing to see that 80% of the students taking part are girls,” said Hastings Deering’s General Manager People and External Affaris Vincent Cosgrove.

“We hope the day will encourage them to consider some careers that might not have been on their radars before in our bid to improve the gender balance in the resources sector.”

Simone Long, QUT’s Engagement Coordinator Science and Engineering Faculty said it was great to be able to show students how their classroom lessons relate to the real world.

“We really enjoy helping students develop the foundation skills in STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics), that will help them reason, think creatively, work collaboratively and apply that to a complex problem. We look forward to hearing their 50-year plans for energy generation at the end of the day,” he said.

“Students must consider many factors in their plans such as consumer cost, continuity of supply, emissions as well as export income and employment.”

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