Back row: Vaughan Eustace, Brent McLeod, Jameel Sullivan, Shelton Bell, Monty Murray, Arnold Murray, Trevor Davidson, Issac Mundraby (Qld Gas Corporation);  Front row:  Robyn Simpson, William Perese, Leonard Vaeagi, Markeeta Ah Sam, Gabrielle Keating (DEEWR),  Kerry Fullarton  (ESQ)  

December 17, 2012

Fourteen unemployed South Burnett residents now have a “foot in the door” of the lucrative resources industry after graduating from a special training program on Friday.

The jobseekers, from Nanango, Cloyna, Murgon and Cherbourg,  should now have an excellent chance of finding work … 70 per cent of trainees who went through the same “camp operations” program run in Gympie last year successfully gained employment.

Project co-ordinator Kerry Fullarton, from Energy Skills Queensland (ESQ), said this was the first such program to be run in the Murgon area.

The training is designed to provide unemployed people with the skills to fill positions in the Surat Basin and Gladstone regions.

Already some of the graduates have had interviews and medicals with companies such as Ess Compass, Macmahon Contractors and Easternwell and one has been confirmed to start work on January 11.

The training is part of ESQ’s Queensland Workforce Skilling Strategy for the Southern Wide Bay Burnett which is funded by industry, the Federal and State governments and the Skilling Queenslanders for Work Initiative.

Ms Fullarton said the South Burnett trainees completed a Certificate II in Hospitality with modules aligned to industry requests.

She said they were now qualified to enter three streams in the resources industry: kitchen staff, guest services and groundspeople.

“This is an entry level training program which provides a foot in the door in the resources sector,” Ms Fullarton said.

“However they could go on to other positions such as truck drivers or security personnel.”

The training was organised by ESQ but was conducted by Brisbane Business & Hospitality Training.

It included 40 hours of work experience in the local area plus an excursion to the Surat Basin to meet prospective employers.

Ms Fullarton said now that they had graduated, the trainees would not be abandoned.

“We just don’t leave you out on a limb. We will work with you over the next six months until you are placed,” she said.

DEEWR Local Employment Co-ordinator Gabrielle Keating said she was impressed by the way all the trainees had developed during the course.

“I said at the start, ‘Don’t be in this room if you don’t want a job as what this program achieves is jobs,” she said.

ESQ is hoping to hold a second Camp Operations course in Murgon next year.

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