As Queenslanders turn up the air-conditioning over the summer, Cairns engineering student Toby Medway will be experiencing what it’s like to work at one of the baseload power stations that underpins the state’s energy supplies.
Toby, 22, is putting his QUT undergraduate mechanical engineering studies into practice in a three-month vacation practice placement at CS Energy’s Kogan Creek Power Station near Chinchilla.
He is one of 12 university students accepted into CS Energy’s Engineering Vacation Practice Program, with the other students coming from a range of engineering disciplines such as electrical, mechanical, aerospace and control systems.
Over the summer, the students will shadow some of CS Energy’s most experienced engineers and be given projects to complete to contribute to the practical component of their degree.
For Toby, it was a site tour of CS Energy’s Wivenhoe Power Station earlier this year that ignited his interest in the energy industry, after he was awarded a QUT Learning Potential Fund Scholarship sponsored by the company.
“I was interested in the heavy mechanical and mining industries and realised that the energy industry had a lot of similarities, so I decided to apply for CS Energy’s vacation practice program,” Toby said.
“During my time at Kogan Creek I hope to be exposed to a range of different engineering and trade processes and gain an insight into the operation and maintenance of an energy production facility.”
Above: Toby in front of CS Energy's Kogan Creek Power Station.
Toby grew up in Cairns and moved to Brisbane in 2016 to start his QUT degree. In addition to his Mechanical Engineering major, Toby is studying minors in Manufacturing and Heavy Mechanical.
He said the QUT Learning Potential Fund Scholarship helped with costs of living and eased the pressure to work long hours at a part-time job, freeing him up for more study time.
CS Energy’s annual scholarship is awarded to a student who comes from a regional Queensland or Greater Brisbane background, who is undertaking studies in an undergraduate Bachelor Degree in engineering or science relevant to the power generation industry. The university matches CS Energy’s donation to the fund dollar-for-dollar.
QUT's Acting Philanthropy Manager, Nadeyn Barbieri said CS Energy was one of a number of companies investing in the next generation by supporting the Learning Potential Fund scholarships.
“The Learning Potential Fund gives bright and ambitious students like Toby the chance to pursue a university education,” Ms Barbieri said.
For more information about the QUT Learning Potential Fund, please visit: www.qut.edu.au/giving/learning-potential-fund.