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'Try-A-Trade' inspires young minds to consider building it into a career

'Try-A-Trade' inspires young minds to consider building it into a career

Published:07 March 2018

Try-A-Trade events were held at CQUni’s Rockhampton City and Mackay Ooralea campuses this week. High school students from around CQ tried their hand at the bricklaying, carpentry, plumbing and electrical trades.

Spending a few hours with bricks and mortar and building a letterbox might not seem like much, but to high schoolers like Matthew Kendall it’s a fun way to build the foundations of a potential career.

Dozens of Central Queensland high school students converged on CQUniversity’s Rockhampton City and Mackay Ooralea campuses this week to participate in a ‘Try-A-Trade’ event.

During the WorldSkills Australia sponsored events the students got a taste of what it’s like to be a carpenter, bricklayer, electrician and plumber – and most of all they had fun while they were doing it.

Matthew Kendall from Rockhampton State High School said he enjoyed the bricklaying trade as he had a family member who worked in the trade.

“It was fun having a go at all the different trades with my friends,” he said. “The most challenging part was trying to break that brick the old fashioned way without a saw.”

“I’d like to take on an apprenticeship when I finish school.”

Fellow student Iesha Bates said she liked the gritty aspect of bricklaying, but she wasn’t sure if she would pursue it as career.

“I learned about different types of cement and how to level the bricks,” she said.

“I’ve still got options of what I’d like to do, maybe doing diesel fitting or be an electrician,” she said.

At CQUni Mackay Ooralea 30 Year 10 high school students tried their hand at electrical, plumbing and carpentry trades.

Holy Spirit College students Alexander Wood and Thomas Ross both expressed interest in Carpentry.

Thomas said he liked the hands-on aspect of the trade, and was inspired by his granddad and uncle who are both carpenters.

“Alexander and I also study workshopping at school, and on the weekends we enjoy making lures and testing them out when we go fishing,” Thomas said.

“Unfortunately, we haven’t caught a fish with one of them yet, but we have fun trying.”

HSC Manual Arts Teacher Chris Kidd said the school had supported Try a Trade day for almost a decade.

“Students who are fortunate to gain an apprenticeship while still in school have the ability to study at CQUni one day a week, whilst still completing high school,” he said.

“Another great thing about studying a trade while still in high school, is that students will get paid to undertake work placements when the time comes.”