Let’s talk workforce: supporting the development of a capable engineering workforce for Tasmania

Ensuring that Tasmania has a competent, sustainable and diverse engineering workforce is a fundamental element of Engineers Australia’s purpose. Staff and office bearers are investing considerable effort in achieving this, with 2019 seeing the progression of several ongoing initiatives and the successful launch of a number of new programs.
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Participants at gender equality in engineering workshop

Ensuring that Tasmania has a competent, sustainable and diverse engineering workforce is a fundamental element of Engineers Australia’s purpose. Staff and office bearers are investing considerable effort in achieving this, with 2019 seeing the progression of several ongoing initiatives and the successful launch of a number of new programs. Below is an update from David Pointing, General Manager for Tasmania, on the major workforce development activities underway in Tasmania:

Engineers Australia Graduate Program in Tasmania

The first-ever Engineers Australia Graduate Program to be delivered in Tasmania kicked off in August, with 20 graduates from across Tasmania attending the program’s first two-day workshop in Launceston. The program will run for 18 months and consist of three of these two-day workshops and a portfolio of online and self-study modules. We celebrated the launch of the program by linking the first workshop with our first-ever ‘Projects in the Pub’ event for Launceston. Over 50 Engineers Australia members enjoyed a fun night hearing about the project experiences of Engineers Australia Fellows Joe Luttrell and Rod Neville. A second intake for the Engineers Australia Graduate Program is expected to start mid-2020 – contact Darren Beattie for details.

Gender Equality in Engineering mentoring program

The year-long Gender Equality in Engineering mentoring program, featuring 10 female mentees and 10 male mentors, will conclude with a public workshop in Hobart on the 14th October. The workshop will build on the lessons learnt and shared experiences of the participants, aiming to initiate and promote changes in workplace cultures where they count. We are currently reviewing the impacts of the program and exploring how to build on current learnings and implement next steps, including repeating the program in 2020. Members can still register for the workshop.

Engineering & Infrastructure Workforce Development Advisory Committee

We are currently in discussions with Skills Tasmania and the Civil Contractors Federation to establish a jointly led Advisory Committee. The purpose of this committee is to strengthen the sharing and planning of workforce development initiatives that support major engineering and infrastructure works planned across Tasmania. This work builds upon the previous three years of Engineers Australia’s coordination of an Engineering Workforce Development Advisory Board under the leadership of Chair Tim Gardner CompIEAust.

Career Pathways for Para-professionals 

With support from Skills Tasmania we have been working with consultants to increase our understanding of the career pathways for paraprofessionals in the engineering sector. This project will be completed soon, and the project report will assist education providers in developing programs to better support the development of paraprofessionals, and assist individuals and their employers in developing their skills. 

Driving Diversity scholarships for 2020

We invite industry partners to support our third round of scholarships for female engineering students who are in their first year of studies. The program provides students with financial support and an invaluable connection to an industry contact and the broader Engineers Australia community, particularly our Diversity & Inclusion and Young Engineers groups. 

Engineering student Careers Expo at UTAS in March 2020

Engineers Australia coordinates yearly engineering-specific careers expo for students at UTAS and invites industry partners to participate. This year’s event saw over 120 students attending with representatives from around 20 engineering employers (mostly Tasmanian, some from interstate). Planning is now underway for the 2020 event on 5th March 2020.

If you have questions or comments about the above, please contact Darren Beattie, Engineers Australia’s Stakeholder Relations Manager.

Image: Participants at gender equality in engineering workshop