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Get Into Resources

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North Metropolitan TAFE recently hosted the 6th edition of ‘Get Into Resources’, a 3-day interactive event focusing on careers in the resources sector; more than 1,500 students have benefited from the program since 2012.  

Between 21-23 June, over 400 students from 15 regional and metropolitan schools were given the opportunity to interact with around 40 professionals from across the resources sector. The event involved hands-on activities, workshops, tours, information booths, and presentations by special guest speakers.

‘Get Into Resources’ Committee Chair Meryl Jones says the event’s mission is to showcase the resources industry to secondary schools students and inspire a talent pipeline for the future.

“This is achieved by bringing together students, teachers, industry and community in a very interactive way. ‘Get Into Resources’ gives students an idea of what people actually working in the industry do, in an environment where they are comfortable and encouraged to experiment and ask questions”, Ms Jones said.

“It’s a unique opportunity to find out more about some of the 150 different career opportunities available in the resources sector.”

“The Resources industry is all about innovation, lifestyle and opportunity. Even after the end of the resources boom in Western Australia, the sector still employs around 100,000 people – 10% of the state’s workforce – and accounts for 40% of WA’s economy. “

Activities this year included surveying with 3D imaging, a simulated welding competition, a 360° virtual reality tour of the North Ranking Oil Platform Complex and a chemical engineering/metallurgy activity involving real copper extraction. Exhibitor booths included Sandfire Resources, St Barbara Limited, IGO, Department of Mines and Petroleum, Apprenticeships Australia and Curtin University.

Students were also given a tour of North Metropolitan TAFE’s CUT Mine, a unique simulated facility that provides students with 'real' hands on experience in underground mining.

During the tour, students heard from experienced industry professionals about safety and emergency procedures, geology and mapping, drilling equipment and techniques, ventilation and simulated excavation techniques, as well as the associated school subjects that are applied in each job.

 “It is important for students to see that what they learn in school applies to careers in the resources sector. Some students may think they will never need some subjects after school, but I use physics and chemistry at work every day”, Rio Tinto Senior Mining Engineer Katie Serjeantson said.

Pinjarra Senior High School has been involved since the first ‘Get Into Resources’ event, six years ago. Senior School Counsellor Julie Gray has attended every year and says she “can’t see the school not coming in the future”.

“Each year the event gets more and more engaging, focusing on hands on activities”, Ms Gray said. “It’s a wonderful opportunity to actually strip wires, learn more about metal fabrication and computer software used in the industry and get an idea of what the jobs industry are – and what the professionals actually do.”

“Our students come all the way from Pinjarra for this, and for most of them this is their first experience of what education in the city would look like. This is also a fantastic opportunity for them to network with industry professionals in an adult environment.”

“Most importantly, our students come out with a sense of purpose, with an idea of a pathway they can aspire to and a clear vision of what a transition to TAFE would be like”, Ms Gray said.

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The 2017 ‘Get Into Resources’ event was sponsored by St Barbara Limited, Sandfire Resources NL, The Chamber of Minerals and Energy of Western Australia, IGO, the Chamber of Commerce and Industry WA, the Department of Mines and Petroleum, the Australian Institute of Geoscientists and DigiRock.

The organisation’s next event is scheduled for 20 – 22 June 2018. Schools are encouraged to contact Jo Watkins, CEO of Earth Science Western Australia at to register their interest for 2018.

For more information or photos of this year’s ‘Get Into Resources’ go to their Facebook page or website.

Page last updated July 06, 2017