Thursday, June 27, 2024


Mackay and Whitsunday Life

Powering Careers With Moranbah's Electrotechnology Program

A pioneering Moranbah program designed to equip local talent with cutting-edge

electrotechnology skills is creating career pathways into the mining industry while fostering thriving communities.

Anglo American – which operates five steelmaking coal mines in the Bowen Basin – partnered with Moranbah State High School (MSHS) and Major Training to deliver the electrotechnology course in the region.

The course provides an entry-level understanding of electrical systems, circuitry and safety while allowing graduates to carve six months off an electrical apprenticeship.

With a 100 per cent success rate, the 19 graduating students from Moranbah, Dysart and Clermont will get four credits towards the 20 credits needed to complete their Queensland Certificate of Education.

MSHS student Alexandra Ibbertson, who is about to finish the electrotech course, was also selected as a school-based trainee at Anglo American’s Moranbah North Mine in January.

She said the course and the traineeship had been invaluable for steering her to a career in the mining industry.

“It has shown me a full, in-depth scope of what will come if I end up as an electrician in the field,” she said.

“It’s taught me about safety, teamwork and how important it is to co-operate in a group.

“With Moranbah being such a small town and mining being the central focus of it, having courses such as these allow students to transition smoothly into the mining industry and help them secure apprenticeships for the future.”

Moranbah North Mine offers three school-based traineeships, four mechanical and four electrical apprenticeships, and six new-to-industry positions each year.

Moranbah North Mine general manager Paul Stephan said they had received more than 1,500 applications for the 14 apprentice and new-to-industry roles advertised last month and would advertise in August for the next intake of school-based apprentices.

“By hiring locally, we ensure we retain talent within our region, driving economic growth and

sustainability for years to come.

“It keeps kids connected to family and community while providing a talent pipeline to ensure we have sustainable operations going forward, and helps to keep our local businesses thriving.”

The Moranbah electrotech graduates were treated to a visit to the Resources Centre of Excellence (RCoE) in Mackay to celebrate the end of their course.

Moranbah student Bradley Oram said it was an eye-opening, hands-on experience that cemented his desire to work in the mining industry.

“I was leaning towards auto electrical but after this electrotechnology program, I’m definitely open to becoming a high voltage electrician.

“If you help get the kids into the industry, that’s obviously making the town more sustainable.”

Fellow graduate Brooke Foley said her electrician father had inspired her to pursue this career.

“I grew up helping him around the house which made me interested in it,” she said.

“Having courses like this in school, it builds the future generations to have the incentive to go into mining careers and follow the paths of their elders.”

Moranbah State High School electrotechnology students Hayden Bell and Lincoln

Nicholas preparing for an underground simulation tour at Resources Centre of Excellence in

Mackay. Image supplied

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