TRAINING BOOST: WICET has donated new welding gear to the EQIP Engineering Skills Centre to mark their long-term partnership.
TRAINING BOOST: WICET has donated new welding gear to the EQIP Engineering Skills Centre to mark their long-term partnership. Contributed

WICET forges strong bonds with skills centre

WIGGINS Island Coal Export Terminal has donated two welding machines and six welding helmets to the EQIP Engineering Skills Centre to celebrate their partnership.

As one of Gladstone's major employers, WICET forged this partnership with EQIP to give the young people of Gladstone the much-needed hands-on industry experience so highly sought after by today's employers.

On a weekly basis, EQIP provides local school students the opportunity to undergo a day and a half of training to help develop their technical skills and spend a day with local industry to gain a better appreciation of the sector.

Through this partnership, WICET has supplied fabrication materials to EQIP, which the students will make into steel work benches and welding curtain frames for WICET.

The students will also manufacture 23 steel covers for WICET's pulley inventory - a crucial component of its conveyor systems.

WICET chief operating officer Marcus McAuliffe, who presented the equipment to EQIP, said the company was pleased to give something back to the Gladstone community to help young people develop technical skills that would stand them in good stead for the future.

Mr McAuliffe thanked Darren Ogden, WICET operational readiness warehouse and inventory lead, for championing this important community initiative.

He also congratulated EQIP co-ordinator Derek Horton and trainer Peter Hammett for the work they were doing to support the success of Gladstone's next generation.

The training program has been running for 11 years, with the placement rate at 93% for the past three years.

Despite the current industry downturn, placement continues to hover at about 85%.

Although EQIP comes under the government umbrella, it receives no government funding and is instead supported by the Gladstone industry.



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