Nyrstar is a highly rewarding place to work. Challenges and opportunities continue to present themselves, and I really enjoy that consistent feeling of responsibility and value-adding that I first experienced as a vacation student.
I studied Mechanical Engineering at the University of Tasmania. As part of my degree, I had to undertake three months work during the summer break between my third and fourth years. At the time I didn’t really know what I wanted to do, but I was lucky enough to find a position with Nyrstar (called Zinifex at the time) at their Hobart smelter.
I was working on reducing the wear of the furnace in the Roasting Department at the beginning, and this was successful. I was immediately struck by the level of responsibility I was given, and the feeling that I was actively contributing to the Roasting Department, the Hobart site and the company as a whole.
After my holiday work, I was kept on as a contractor one day a week in order to provide assistance during a roasting plant shut down. The company then granted me a scholarship for my final year of University.
It was about this time that I realised this was a company that I would not only enjoy working for, but I’d be rewarded for the work I did, so I applied for their graduate program. It struck me as being a good starting point for my career, and one that would provide me with the necessary leadership skills.
During my first year of the graduate program I was at the Port Pirie smelter. I was then rotated back to the Hobart smelter. I was exposed to all facets of engineering including project management, reliability engineering, plant engineering, as well as engineering design across multiple disciplines.
The skills learnt in the graduate program held me in good stead, first as the Plant Engineer at the Hobart smelter, and now as the Maintenance Team Leader. I have also been to Europe twice to review their operations and to share knowledge across the organisation.