A small group of Grade 10 students is learning foundational engineering
and fabrication skills at the Surat Basin Trade Camp, an intensive week-long
workshop sponsored by CSG Science Technology Engineering Math’s (STEM) Schools
Program, and facilitated at Dalby by TAFE Queensland SkillsTech and QMI
While the majority of Queensland school students take a break during the
September holidays, this group of students from all corners of the Darling
Downs region is busy learning a suite of specialised trade and technical skills
in pursuit of future careers as tradespeople.
Schools Unit Project Manager Robyn Fraser said students have been making
a trailer equipped with a BBQ as well as participating in site tours to familiarise
themselves with real life workshops.
According to Ms Fraser, their instructor Stephen Gates has been
thoroughly impressed with the students and their enthusiasm to learn new
QMI Solutions’ Gateway Schools Manager for Manufacturing and Engineering,
Leanne Hixon spent the week participating in Trade Camp with the students. She
observes that students get an opportunity to develop new skills and try out
different facets of the engineering industry that they may never have
considered as a career pathway previously. Additionally, networking
opportunities with industry specialists also broaden their experience.
Instructor Stephen Gates said that the fitted and finished trailer will
be handed over to the Dalby Police Citizens Youth Club. He was genuinely
impressed with the students’ level of skill and ability, their maturity and
focus in committing to a job and seeing it through to completion, as well as their
great sense of ownership of this project.
Michael Riddle, a boilermaker by trade and father of Surat Basin Trade
Camp participant Jimi Riddle was happy to see this type of training being
offered to young people in a place like Dalby. Mr Riddle believes there should
definitely be more training delivered to young kids in regional and remote
Queensland, given the high rate of youth unemployment in the region.