Indigenous and female students explore engineering and trades

26 June 2017

Indigenous and female students make up nearly half the students taking part in the trade and engineering camps in Mount Isa this week, run by the Queensland Minerals and Energy Academy (QMEA).

Under the watchful eye of Glencore employees the 35 Years 11 and 12 students have the choice of refurbishing push bikes provided by the Mount Isa police department or solving real-life engineering problems on-site at Glencore’s Mount Isa Mines.

Queensland Resources Council (QRC) Director of Skills, Education and Diversity Katrina-Lee Jones said the number of students from various backgrounds taking part in QMEA programs continues to grow.

“When it comes to diversity many in society think the resources sector is a little old-fashioned but that’s a big misconception. The QRC has a target of at least 20 per cent women in non-traditional roles by 2020,” Ms Jones said.

“Last year the QMEA achieved a three-fold increase in the number of indigenous students entering into a pathway towards a career in the resources sector through its 72 events across the state.

“These senior students are only one or two years away from starting an apprenticeship or enrolling in an engineering degree, so the long-term future of our sector to reach diversity goals and ensure an innovative workforce is on track.”

Glencore’s Executive General Manager of Copper, Deon Van der Mescht said the company had a strong focus on ensuring that young people in its resources communities had the opportunity to see and understand the career options available to them in the sector.

“By working side-by-side with Glencore employees, the students gain experience of careers they might not have considered in a realistic industry environment. They’ll learn useful skills, and we hope, be inspired to seek careers as trades-people or engineers,” said Mr Van der Mescht.

“By providing the opportunity to work both on the mine site and in a realistic workshop environment mentored by Glencore experts, the students gain a real insight into some pretty exciting and rewarding careers.”

The Make in Now in Trades (MINT) camp involves 19 year 12 students from Spinifex, Good Shepherd and Cloncurry schools, while the remaining students would take part in the Make It Now Engineering (MINE) Challenge.

The camps would be held from 25-30 June 2017.

The QMEA is the education arm of the QRC and is a partnership with the Queensland Government through its Industry Gateway Schools Program.

Photos available on request.

Media contacts: Anthony Donaghy 0412 450 360 & Angela Harper 0414 712 605

Further information

Best time for media to attend Trade Camp: Tuesday, Wednesday morning and Thursday
Location: Spinifex trade training centre.

Best time for media to attend Engineering camp: Multiple opportunities throughout the week – access to site controlled by Glencore. Presentations are on Friday morning

Schools attending:
Alexandra Hills State High School
Anglican Church Grammar School
Biloela State High School
Bundamba State Secondary College
Cloncurry State School P-12
Dysart State High School
Good Shepherd Catholic College Mount Isa
Kirwan State High School
Spinifex State College
Tannum Sands State High School
Wavell State High School

QMEA contact name and phone number:
MINE challenge contact = Dan Rea 0428 720 744
MINT Challenge contact = Kym Frost 0457 768 298

Industry contact:
Leanne Ryder
Manager Human Resources
North Queensland Glencore Copper Assets
p: 07 4744 3651
m: 0401 992 009
e: leanne.ryder@glencore.com.au