The Thistle - An E-Newsletter of Scotch College, Perth, Western Australia

Learning from Experience – Inspiring career choices

The inevitable question of, 'What are you going to do when you leave school?' starts in Year 10 for most students with a vast majority having little to no idea. The reality for this current generation is that they will have multiple careers over their lifetime.

The role the College can play is in introducing the boys to a range of industries to give them an insight into choices that, through their studies, may appeal to them in the future.

Last week a group of Year 12 students visited the DeGrussa Copper-Gold Mine as guests of Sandfire Resources NL. The mine is located 900km North East of Perth in between Meekatharra and Newman.

After a very early morning flight the boys were inducted into safe work practices in a complex mining operation and able to see first-hand a range of career opportunities within the resources sector.

DeGrussa Copper-Gold Mine is one of the Asia-Pacific region's premier, high-grade copper mines.


Sandfire Resources NL is a first mover in Australia for renewable energy use in an off-grid mining application.  The boys were particularly interested in the solar farm as they observed the future of Australia's renewables sector.

The innovative $40M DeGrussa Solar Project was successfully commissioned at Sandfire's DeGrussa Copper-Gold Mine in June 2016.  It covers a total area of over 20 hectares and comprises of 34,080 solar PV panels with a single-axis tracking system mounted on 4,700 steel posts.  This enables the panels to track the sun during the day, improving the plant's overall performance. More information on the Solar Instalment can be seen here:

Tim Day OSC '04 is a metallurgist on the mine and explained the science behind Copper extraction as well as the benefits of metallurgy as a career. The boys were thoroughly engaged and asked many astute questions. They left with a greater understanding of career opportunities within the resource sector and the complexity of FIFO.

The Sandfire Resources NL team were very generous and excellent with the boys. It was truly a rare experience for our students.

Mr Peter Allen
Director of Teaching and Learning