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QMEA event encourages girls to consider trades careers

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Global Mining Review,

Central Queensland girls have been encouraged to consider trade careers when they took part in a Queensland Minerals and Energy Academy (QMEA) event at Moranbah State High School’s CTEC centre this week.

The BMA Toolkit4 Schoolkids gave them hands-on experience of trade skills, while being mentored by tradies from BMA and other local mines.

They also heard from top QMEA Ambassador Caitlyn Barnes via video. Barnes was named Exceptional QMEA Student last week in the Queensland Resources Council (QRC)/Women in Mining and Resources Queensland Resources Awards for Women.

Barnes said her career direction from hairdresser to electrician changed after attending a QMEA event.

“It’s very important that girls understand that trades are a viable career option for them and we try to spark their interest through these engaging activities,” said QRC Director of Skills Education and Diversity Katrina-Lee Jones.

“Currently, women make up just 3% of our tradespeople in our resources sector in Queensland and we are facing a shortage of skilled tradespeople.

“Encouraging more girls to take up trades will help fill this skills gap, while bringing the benefits of a more diverse workforce to companies. Caitlyn is an excellent example of how these sorts of activities can open up the eyes of our female students to a wider selection of career options.”

Girls from Moranbah, Blackwater and Dysart state high schools took part in this week’s all-girls event on Tuesday 13 March. On Thursday 15 March, another toolkit event was held at CQU’s campus in Emerald and students from Emerald, Blackwater, Dysart and Moranbah attended and were supported by BMA and tradies from local mines.

Meanwhile, Moranbah and Emerald state high schools hosted high achieving students in a series of STEM 4 Schoolkids one-day events this week.

The Year 10 students, who have an interest in professional careers in engineering or science, completed a series of challenges and were mentored by industry professionals from BMA and the Curragh coal mine.

The QMEA is a partnership between the QRC and the Queensland Government under its ‘Gateway to Industry Schools Program’ with 46 schools across the state.

QRC is the peak representative body for Queensland ‘s resource sector. The Queensland resources sector provides one in every AUS$6 dollars in the Queensland economy, sustains one in eight Queensland jobs, and supports 16 400 businesses across the state all from 0.1% of Queensland’s land mass.

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