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victoria’s future leaders of industry announced
Eighteen secondary school students from Geelong have taken the first critical steps towards a career in manufacturing after being awarded Alcoa Future Leaders of Industry scholarships.

The program, initiated by Alcoa and the Geelong Regional Vocational Education Council (GRVEC) in 2006, aims to encourage secondary students to consider the many and varied career opportunities within the local manufacturing sector.

In addition, a further 23 scholarships have been offered to young people from Portland and Heywood as part of a similar program.  The Future Leaders of Industry program in the Portland region began at Portland Aluminium in 2005 as an Alcoa initiative. Today it has grown to include 12 local businesses and the Glenelg and Southern Grampians Local Learning and Employment Network (GSG LLEN) has joined the co-ordination team for the first time this year.

GSG LLEN Executive Officer Anne Murphy said: “By keeping local young people engaged in further education and developing their employability skills, the program is helping to create a potential workforce and building the social capacity of our community.”

Alcoa Point Henry Operations Manager Stewart Esdale said the program was developed on the principle that local industries need to be able to attract, develop, retain and have access to the best talent.

“This program provides students with an insight into the manufacturing industry while helping to raise the sector’s profile in the Geelong region.  It’s designed to encourage young people to consider a career in manufacturing and follow a study path which could lead to employment opportunities,” he said.

GRVEC’s Executive Officer Lynne Clarke said the program shines a spotlight on the diverse career opportunities in the manufacturing sector.

“Manufacturing businesses in our region are developing new and innovative products and processes in areas as diverse as automotive, food, chemicals, refining, timber processing, metals, textiles, clothing and footwear and engineering.”

The Future Leaders of Industry programs will see participants engage in a variety of activities through a series of structured events including:

  • Leadership workshops;
  • Tours of local companies; 
  • ‘Buddy’ week where participants are paired with an employee at local companies;
  • Communication and work readiness skills training days; and
  • TAFE and University tours.

Participating schools in Geelong include Matthew Flinders Girls College, Bellarine Secondary College, St Ignatius College, Sacred Heart College, Lara Secondary College, Western Heights Secondary College, Geelong High School and Grovedale College.

The program in the Portland region is open to Year 11 and TAFE equivalent students at Bayview College, Portland Secondary College and Heywood Secondary College and SWTAFE.

chanelle carter memorial fund
High school students from Peel and the South-West in WA will have the chance to experience life as a UWA student and consider a career in science, thanks to a memorial fund established by Alcoa of Australia.

The Fund has been created to honour a talented and community-minded graduate of The University of Western Australia, and former Alcoa employee Chanelle Carter, who tragically died in a cycling accident in Spain last year.  Alcoa has committed $35,000 to the Fund over the next six years.

The Chanelle Carter Memorial Fund will enable six students each year to travel to Perth and participate in National Science Week activities, while staying at UWA’s Trinity College.

Chanelle won the Royal Australian Chemical Institute Prize while completing a BSc (Hons) in Chemistry.  She was held in great esteem at Alcoa where she worked as a Senior Research Scientist with the company’s global Technology Delivery Group.

Through her commitment to environmental issues and human rights she became a passionate supporter of Oxfam, dedicating her time, money and talents to help disadvantaged people around the world.
Keen to sponsor a project that would embody Ms Carter’s principles, her Alcoa colleagues approached UWA about their idea.

“She genuinely wanted to make a difference in life and put a great deal of her energy into the community,” said Dr Ian Harrison, Alcoa’s Director of Research and Development Global Refining.

“Chanelle was unquestionably one of the most talented people I have ever worked with.  She was also committed to developing young scientists and was a fantastic mentor.”

Associate Professor Jan Dook from UWA’s Centre for Learning Technology said: “This Fund will help to generate interest in a career in science for young people from the country, especially girls.  Programs such as these raise awareness of what it takes to go to university, the opportunities available to the students and what they can achieve.”

The first group of year 10 girls from Pinjarra High School and Newton Moore Senior High School in Bunbury will arrive at UWA in August.

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Chanelle Carter - scroll down for full story about the Memorial Fund that Alcoa has established in her name