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Wiring electrical circuits, operating a virtual welder and disassembling motors were all part of the program for Bowen State High students as they took on the role of being a tradie today.

The Year 10 students were participating in the Tradies for a Day workshop delivered by the Queensland Minerals and Energy Academy (QMEA) – the education arm of the Queensland Resources Council (QRC).

Abbot Point Operations sponsored the workshop and had four qualified tradespeople and apprentices on hand to assist the students and answer any career questions.

Abbot Point Operations General Manager, Allan Brown said the students showed plenty of skill and curiosity about the sort of trade roles currently in demand in the resources sector.

“We highly value helping local students find their career path and we have a world-class apprenticeship program that has been training local tradies for generations,” Mr Brown said.

“We hope this opportunity to learn firsthand from some of our best and brightest is the next step on the journey to these students working for us, either in a trade or in any of the professional skillsets we require to maintain safe and responsible operations of the North Queensland Export Terminal.

“Roles in the resources supply chain are often lifelong careers full of rewarding work that helps generate revenue for governments to pay for services like nurses, roads, and hospitals, while benefiting people overseas who use the energy and steel made from Australian coal to improve their lives.”

Bowen State High School principal, Robert Harris, said the workshop not only gave the students some practical skills but also complemented their academic studies as well.

“The QMEA workshops complement the Australian curriculum and today’s workshop referred to concepts in the Year 10 science, maths, design and technologies curriculum – so there is broader educational value as well,” Mr Harris said.

QRC Director of Skills, Education and Diversity, Ms Katrina-Lee Jones said the Year 10 workshop was perfectly timed as the students considered their future study options and career pathway after school.

“Most trades are based on a good understanding of science, technology, engineering, and maths (STEM) subjects, so today’s workshop was a great chance for the students to discuss this with trade experts and consider their subject selection for senior school,” said Ms Jones.

“The resources and energy sector is constantly changing but there will always be a demand for skilled tradespeople.

“We know that students from QMEA schools who enter a trade are three times more likely to go in the resources/ and energy sector,” she said.

“This can largely be attributed to engagement with workshops like today which showcase the benefits of joining the industry for the students and give the industry sponsors the opportunity to meet potential apprentices.

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