TAFE and local high schools give new life to mining equipment

TAFE Queensland and local high schools have reaped the rewards of a recent reinvigoration of the Glencore Skills Centre workshop at Mount Isa Mines.

The TAFE Queensland Mount Isa campus, Spinifex State College and the Good Shepherd Catholic College have repurposed unused Mount Isa Mines’ mining equipment for their vocational courses. The classes contribute to vocational training qualifications and offer direct links for students to local industry.

The Mount Isa Mines Mobile Maintenance team donated engines, transmissions, final drive assemblies and other various components for TAFE Queensland students to disassemble, inspect, diagnose and then reassemble.

Donating components that are currently still in use on operational equipment provides students a great opportunity to work and learn on equipment that is still currently in use at Mount Isa Mines.

Good Shepherd Catholic College accepts the donations (left to right): Vicki Anderson, Superintendent Skills Centre and Services, Rachael Scrimgeour, Dean English and James Skea, Amy Webb, Assistant Principal Administration and Kathleen McCarthy, Principal Good Shepherd Catholic College.

Other equipment donated included a lathe, welding bays, work benches, power tools and personal protective equipment such as welding goggles.

Mount Isa Mines Superintendent Skills Centre and Services, Vicki Anderson, says she’s proud to see Glencore donate this equipment so that local vocational institutions can incorporate them into their training.

“It’s rewarding to see equipment like the lathe, Briggs & Stratton motors, and a Festo hydraulic test bench being used at the TAFE Queensland Mount Isa campus, because we know the apprentices will be working on similar equipment, albeit newer models, once they secure employment in our operations,” says Vicki.

“The donations have come about from a reinvigoration of our workshops to better utilise site amenities and to place the business in a stronger and more sustainable position into the future.”

“Not only can our business realise real cost savings, but vocational institutions and our community can also benefit from our prosperity.”

Vicki Anderson, Superintendent Skills Centre and Services with John Ryan, TAFE Queensland Trade Teacher with the Festo hydraulic test bench donated to the TAFE Queensland Mount Isa campus.
Jason Wills, Surface Heavy Fleet Maintenance Superintendent oversees the donation of a 3406B engine and components with John Ryan, TAFE Queensland Trade Teacher.

“We have established solid relationships with TAFE and the high schools and offer valuable pathway programs for local students who are our future employees,” Vicki says.

Spinifex State College Head of Senior Campus, Chris Pocock, says the relationship the school has formed with Glencore is a critical one for the college.

“Students are provided with opportunities to forge strong links with Glencore through programs including Girls 4 Mining, Work Experience, our Career Information Evening, school visits by Glencore employees and QMEA related programs,” says Chris.

“This means that students have a deeper understanding of the mining process and job opportunities available to them in both trade and professional areas, and it gives Glencore a great insight into the skills and attributes of students who might be applying for jobs with them at the completion of Year 12.”

Boilermaker Patrick Stanford uses a lathe donated by Mount Isa Mines, at the of TAFE Queensland Mount Isa campus with Tom Curtis, TAFE Queensland Trade Teacher.
Jason Wills, Surface Heavy Fleet Maintenance Superintendent delivers AD45b wheel ends to John Ryan, TAFE Queensland Trade Teacher.

TAFE Queensland General Manager (north region), Tim Campbell, says the donation from Glencore is very generous.

“TAFE Queensland works closely with industry to ensure our training meets current and future employment demands,” says Tim.

“The donation of this industry-relevant equipment will ensure we have job-ready graduates who can assist North West employers to innovate and grow their businesses.”

Principal of Good Shepherd Catholic College, Kathleen McCarthy, says the donation of equipment from Glencore came at the right time, as the college opened their brand new state of the art Design and Technology Centre.

“At Good Shepherd, we are proud of our collaboration with Glencore and look forward to continuing to engage with them to provide our students with the best possible options post-school,” says Kathleen.