At age 35, Maya Boeren has had her fair share of career highlights working as a pilot, a vet nurse and a miner, but it’s her latest job as an electrotechnology apprentice with Transgrid that is proving to be her best move yet.
“I was looking for a career change, something different that was practical and hands on. There’s a lot to learn but it has been great so far and I’m excited for what the future holds,” Ms Boeren said.
Ms Boeren is one of 19 apprentices in Transgrid’s 2023 intake and began her role as a Communications Technician apprentice in Newcastle at the start of the year.
Signed up by not-for-profit apprenticeship, training and employment provider, VERTO, Ms Boeren is also receiving the Australian Government’s New Energy Apprentice Support Payment (NEASP).
The payment is designed to encourage apprentices to choose clean energy careers, improve retention rates and deliver more successful completions by providing direct financial support to apprentices working in a clean energy occupation.
Ms Boeren said the NEASP was a worthwhile incentive for apprentices like her who have an interest in clean energy and working on Australia’s most important energy projects.
“I think it’s an exciting time to be working in the energy industry and seeing how the system adapts to the renewables coming into the market,” she said.
“Five years ago, I didn’t imagine I’d be working in a comms lab reviewing faults from a Transgrid substation and finding solutions to those faults. But here I am, and I’m really enjoying it. As far as opportunities go, the sky’s the limit,” Ms Boeren said.
Transgrid’s Education Program Coordinator, Glen Davis, knows first hand that apprenticeship programs can open many doors, having started out as an apprentice with Transgrid 30 years ago.
“The pace of change in the energy industry is only accelerating and there are lots of opportunities for apprentices like Maya to build successful careers,” he said
“Currently 36 per cent of our apprentices are female and we’d like to see this number continue to grow.
“Women play an important role at Transgrid and are well respected for the valuable perspectives they bring to the job,” Mr Davis said.
VERTO CEO, Ron Maxwell, said VERTO prides itself on working with organisations like Transgrid to help not only sign up, but offer ongoing mentorship and assistance to female apprentices.
“While over the last five years only 11 per cent of trade apprenticeships completed in Australia were female, this number is steadily on the rise and there are real opportunities for women to build successful careers in many trade industries including electrical, clean energy and STEM,” he said.
“Future apprentices will be working with next generation technology and automation, and this requires people like Maya who are creative thinkers and problem solvers.”
If you are a female considering a trade, VERTO offers specialist assistance and ongoing mentorship. For more information, visit www.verto.org.au or phone 1300 483 786.
VERTO is a not-for-profit organisation delivering a range of apprenticeship, community support, employment and training services to assist individuals, employers and industries. We can be found in over 65 locations across New South Wales. For more information, visit verto.org.au.