APPRENTICE: Shelby Warcon replaced an airbrake as part of her practical assessment.
APPRENTICE: Shelby Warcon replaced an airbrake as part of her practical assessment. Jann Houley

APPRENTICES WANTED: 'It would be a shame to pass this up'

ERGON Energy and Energex are on the lookout for nearly 100 of Queensland's brightest aspiring apprentices, an opportunity Shelby Warcon says "would be a shame to pass up”.

With recruitment under way for the early-2020 intake, the Queensland-owned electricity distributors will welcome 95 new starters next January and February, with 72 roles up for grabs at Ergon Energy and 23 at Energex.

For Central Queensland, this will include seven in Rockhampton, two in Gladstone and one each in Miriam Vale and Monto.

Ms Warcon, who works as a first-year distribution overhead linesperson with Ergon, said she was drawn to apply after hearing such positive things about the company.

"I heard really great things about Ergon and everyone I know who works here has either been here forever or are going through their apprenticeships like me,” she said.

"Everyone says it is an ideal place to start off and it helps with getting a foot in the door.

"I love it, it opens so many opportunities. When you do come out you have got all these different options. You can either stay in your field or move off and do other things.”

Born and raised in Rockhampton, Ms Warcon said she was always drawn to manual handling jobs.

Nathan Cocker, Raj Prasad and Shelby Warcon replacing an airbrake as part of their practical assessment.
Nathan Cocker, Raj Prasad and Shelby Warcon replacing an airbrake as part of their practical assessment. Jann Houley

The 23-year-old, who started her apprenticeship back in February, said when the opportunity came up it would have been a no-brainer to jump on it.

"I have learnt so much and knowing that I have set myself up for life in a way is really good because it is hard to find something like that in this day and age,” she said.

"There are also very few girls so it is pretty awesome being one of the few up and coming and paving the way for other girls coming through.”

She said people should get in and apply for the apprenticeships because it would be "a shame to pass up an opportunity if it came knocking at your door”.

"You are surrounded by plenty of people that are welcoming and very knowledgeable that will help set you up for life,” she said.

Ergon's Capricornia area manager Brian Dingle said these roles represented opportunities for people to earn, learn and work in their own communities.

"It's no surprise that there is always enormous interest from local candidates,” Mr Dingle said.

"It's a win all round - local communities benefit from being able to retain local talent, it's great for apprentices to be able to launch their electricity industry careers closer to home, and there's that special sense of pride and commitment that comes from living and working in the communities that you serve.”

Apprenticeships are available across a range of field and substation disciplines, including electricians, distribution and transmission linespersons, communications technicians and mechanical fitters.

For more information or to apply for the 2020 intake, visit the Ergon or Energex websites. Applications close at 10pm on Monday, August 5.



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