First-year mining apprentices celebrated

First-year mining apprentices celebrated

The bright futures of 27 young apprentices were celebrated at the TAFE NSW 2017 Mining Skills Final Presentation evening at Muswellbrook RSL on Thursday 25 May.

More than 100 guests from the region’s mining, business and education communities attended the event to recognise the success of the graduates.

In its 12th consecutive year of operation, the program experienced a 16% increase in enrolments and welcomed new employer partner, Hitachi Construction Machinery.

Designed for first-year apprentices in partnership with the mining industry, the 15-week program places a strong emphasis on safety awareness to prepare them for work on-site. The course delivered by TAFE NSW Muswellbrook covers training in basic hand tool skills across four different trades including electrical, fitting and machining, metal fabrication and welding, and automotive.

TAFE NSW Regional General Manager North, Elizabeth McGregor said the Mining Skills Centre program is a wonderful example of collaboration with council, industry and the wider community delivering great employment and education outcomes for the Upper Hunter.

“At TAFE NSW we are passionate about developing the skills and capabilities of our local workforce and understanding the impact this has on shaping the future of the region,” Elizabeth said.

“This graduation is an important milestone for our ambitious first-year Mining Skills Centre apprentices as they embark on the next steps of their careers in the region’s mining industry.”

MIGAS Plant Mechanic Apprentice, Christopher Scriven was recognised on the evening with the Highest Achiever Award for his dedication to work at Bengalla Mine, approach to study, and attaining the highest overall grade throughout the program.

Plant Mechanic Apprentices Jessica Bonnici and Jackson Hopkins were both presented with Outstanding Student awards for their application to their studies. Jessica is an apprentice with Programmed and employed by Coal & Allied, whilst Jackson is employed as an apprentice at BHP Mt Arthur Coal.

The evening included the presentation of the annual MEMMES Scholarships awarded to BHP Mt Arthur Coal Electrical Apprentice, Blake Pickham and Plant Mechanic, Bradley Kirkwood.

The scholarship was established by the Mining Electrical and Mining Mechanical Engineering Society and provides financial assistance to past Mining Skills Program graduates who are pursuing post-trade qualifications in order to advance their careers in the industry.

IMAGE | 2017 Mining Skills Graduates.


TAFE NSW is Australia’s largest training and education provider with more than 500,000 enrolments and 1,200 courses. As an education innovator, we’re focused on shaping the future through state-of-the-art facilities, systems, technology and teachers. Our graduates are equipped for the jobs of today and the careers of the future.

TAFE NSW offers the best of campus-based delivery as well as flexible, online and work-based learning. Collaboration, diversity and the strong relationships between our locations contribute to and magnify the value of TAFE NSW and importantly, the benefits that we deliver to communities and the economy of NSW.


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