Laura, the 800th apprentice

A TWO Wells girl has been celebrated as the 800th student from her school to successfully commence an apprenticeship.

St Patrick’s Technical College (SPTC) student Laura Oakley is currently undertaking a Certificate III course in Mobile Plant Technology at BHP’s Olympic Dam mine, while also completing her senior schooling.

Having previously left school in year 11 to take up work as a mechanic in the army, the 18-year-old decided to return to school at the completion of her basic training.

Upon her return, Miss Oakley secured her apprenticeship with BHP through group training provider MEGT Australia, having only joined SPTC’s automotive program just a few months earlier.

SPTC principal Rob Thomas said Miss Oakley becoming the 800th commencing apprentice is a landmark achievement for the school, which only opened its doors 10 years ago.

“Laura’s signing with MEGT to work at BHP’s Olympic Dam mine means, on average, St Patrick’s Technical College has put 80 students per year into work across a huge range of industries,” he said.

“Our past students are now opening their own businesses, travelling the world with their careers, buying homes and supporting their families, all because they were able to secure an apprenticeship and a fulfilling career.”

The national average for trade apprenticeship completions is 47.9 per cent, with statistics showing around 94 per cent of SPTC apprentices go on to complete their training.

Tom Staggard

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Born and raised in Adelaide's northern suburbs, Tom attended Tyndale Christian School in Salisbury East before studying journalism at the University of South Australia. Tom joined The Bunyip in June 2017 after previously working in the Adelaide Hills for The Courier newspaper in Mount Barker and the Weekender Herald in Crafers. As part of his role, Tom will cover the Adelaide Plains and Playford council regions. Away from work, he is a massive sports fan and loves all things football, cricket, basketball and soccer.

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