Scholarship recipents at CSU Bathurst with Transgrid's Suzanne Westgate

17 engineering students at Charles Sturt University have received scholarships from Transgrid as part of its commitment to support training and employment opportunities to meet future industry demand.

The awarding of the first scholarships under the program follows the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between Transgrid and Charles Sturt University to collaborate on opportunities for research, infrastructure, training and employment.

Transgrid will work with the university to help develop career pathways for the students through engineering cadet placements with the transmission network and other organisations in regional New South Wales.

The first-year engineering students have each received $20,000 scholarships, with recipients hailing from New South Wales regional centres including Albury, Bathurst, Dubbo, Orange, Port Macquarie and Wagga Wagga, as well as Victoria and Queensland.

Charles Sturt Foundation Trust CEO, Sarah Ansell, welcomed the Transgrid scholarships.

“This is a valuable contribution. Not only does it support the next generation of cadet engineers, but it will also go on to have a significant impact on the engineering industry, solving workforce shortages,” Ms Ansell said.

“The scholarship will help us meet future demand for engineers across regional Australia.

“The fact the recipients come from such a broad span of regional communities demonstrates the importance of the scholarship and the impact it will have on the regional workforce of the future.”

Transgrid Executive General Manager of Major Projects, Gordon Taylor, said, “Transgrid is accelerating the renewable energy transition by building the nation-critical transmission infrastructure to deliver cheaper, cleaner and more reliable energy to millions of Australians.

“As we build the energy superhighway, our major projects including EnergyConnect, HumeLink and VNI West will require world-class engineering experience.”

Transgrid’s $2 million Engineering Scholarship Fund is supporting 100 engineering students at the university’s Bathurst campus between 2023 and 2029 to help build a bigger, skilled workforce across the industry as the clean energy transition accelerates.

“Transgrid is delighted to support the next generation of engineers through their training to help address a critical skills shortage in regional Australia and grow our industry’s skilled workforce as we move into the new energy paradigm,” Mr Taylor said.

“Each scholarship recipient will receive $5,000 annually over four years to support them during their studies, allowing them to focus on achieving their full potential while at university.”

Olivia Tait, 20, of Wagga Wagga, said the scholarship would help with the cost of her studies including travel to and from the Bathurst campus and allow her to focus on becoming a professional engineer.

“I believe that whether you’re designing a highrise building, safety barrier improvements or installing a new power pole, all aspects of engineering contribute to positive change and make a difference in our communities,” Ms Tait said.

“I am very passionate about inspiring other regional women to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics.”

Jake Barnes Philpott, 18, of Cabonne Shire, said the scholarship would help both financially and academically, assisting him to meet living and study expenses and focus more on learning.

“Engineers are the problem solvers of the world,” Mr Barnes Philpott said.

“From the buildings we live and learn in, the vehicles we drive, the devices we use, the medicines we rely upon, everything relates back to engineering. I would like to be a part of an industry that creates solutions for society.”

Applications for the 2024 scholarship program will open mid 2023. For more information, visit www.csu.edu.au/transgrid-scholarship

Feature image: Transgrid scholarship recipients. Image courtesy of Transgrid.

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