Whyalla attracts new young talent

Our people > 28th February, 2022

Whyalla’s iconic steelworks and mining operations are continuing to invest in the local community with re-invigorated apprenticeship, graduate and vacation student programs.

The mining and primary steel businesses have a proud history of developing tradespeople since 1945 and as part of the GFG Alliance, will continue this legacy over the next five years.

The program will incorporate both trade specific and personal development components to ensure we are developing employees who are highly capable and aligned to our values of Family, Change and Sustainability.

The four-year apprenticeship program kicks off with a foundation year focused on formal qualifications and trade-specific workshops. Subsequent years will see the apprentices spend increasingly more time completing on-the-job training and site rotations to improve operational knowledge. Apprentices will also be mentored to support their personal and professional development.

Apprenticeships will be available in numerous disciplines, including mechanical fitter, fabricator, machinist, and electrician.

Running concurrently, the graduate program is open to young professionals who have completed their degree and are commencing their careers.

The two-year graduate program also includes rotations within the business to enhance learning experiences, as well as professional development and a focus on continuous improvement methodologies. Graduates who successfully complete the program will be deployed into professional positions within the business.

Graduate positions are being offered in various engineering fields, including mining, metallurgical, civil, and mechanical, as well as in geology and finance.

Mark Wakelin, Executive General Manager of Human Resources, said the program created pathways for the next generation of workers to pursue a career in their chosen field in the mining and steel industry.

“Fundamental to this is ensuring there are employment pathways in place so young people in the local community can continue to live and work in the area,” he said.

“Attracting and developing talented young people is not only building the capability and capacity of our business but also further supporting local employment which in turn bolsters the local community.

“These programs are a commitment to the future of our Whyalla operations and the continued growth of Whyalla as a vibrant, prosperous, and liveable community.”

This year, 26 graduates started their careers in Whyalla’s historical mining and steel industry, along with 22 new apprentices – adding to the 55 apprentices already employed and, 17 vacation students have also spent their summer working in the Whyalla operations across various strategically important projects.

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