A CHEF who hung up her apron to be a diesel fitter has been named Outstanding Tradeswoman/ Technician/Operator at this year’s Women in Resources National Awards presented in Launceston Thursday night.
Fourth-year BHP Billiton Mitsubishi Alliance apprentice diesel fitter Carolyn Dobson was representing the state after winning her category in the state awards run by the Queensland Resources Council and Women in Mining and Resources Queensland in March.
Carolyn had a dream, and it was to travel Australia as a chef. However, the dream soon morphed into a love of all things mechanical when she started an auto-mechanic course to equip herself to fix her vehicle if it broke down in the outback.
After finishing some work experience with a local mechanic, in her home suburb of Redcliffe, Carolyn went back to the kitchen to finish her chef’s apprenticeship, but not for long.
“The more time I spent in the kitchen, the more I realised that it wasn’t for me, and I would much rather still be fixing cars. That’s when a family friend who worked for BMA told me about the apprenticeships that were offered every year,” Ms Dobson said.
“He was a diesel fitter at one of BMA’s mines and he would always tell me stories about the massive machinery that he works on every day. He encouraged me to apply for a diesel fitting apprenticeship with BMA and so here I am, working on the same machinery as him, the ones I thought I’d only ever hear about.”
Carolyn, who now calls Moranbah home, has encouraged other young women to take up trade careers, helping at ‘try-a-trade’ workshops focussed on high school girls. She is the only female step-up supervisor in her area and is paving the way for other…
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