Apprentices get a jump start to their career through BESIX Watpac

Kangaroo Point Green Bridge exceeds workforce target of 53 apprentices.

Apprentices get a jump start to their career through BESIX Watpac
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BESIX Watpac recently achieved a major milestone at Kangaroo Point Green Bridge, a project the Queensland-founded and based company is delivering for Brisbane City Council as part of the Connect Brisbane consortium. The team has exceeded initial workforce targets with 53 Queenslanders now employed as apprentices on the soon-to-be iconic landmark.

BESIX Watpac Chief Executive Officer Mark Baker said the success of the project so far was thanks in large part to the local talent employed to help bring the project to life.

“The original target for the project was to employ 50 apprentices which was initially seen as a significant challenge,” Mr Baker said.

“We’re really pleased that Kangaroo Point Green Bridge will not only be an iconic landmark for Brisbane but will stand as a reminder for the more than 50 apprentices who kick started their career on the project. We believe in building the best across all aspects of our operations, and this includes careers.”

Lord Mayor Adrian Schrinner said the project will add to Brisbane’s active transport options.

“Once complete, the Kangaroo Point Bridge will reduce congestion on our roads and provide faster and more convenient access between the CBD and Kangaroo Point from the eastern and south-eastern suburbs,” Councillor Schrinner said.

“The Kangaroo Point Bridge will provide a long-awaited connection between Kangaroo Point and the city, but it has also been a bridge to career development and employment opportunities for young people.”

Xavier Farrell is one of the 53 apprentices who has been involved in the project and he said working on Kangaroo Point Green Bridge was the career start he had been looking for.

“I found out about the opportunity through school and then about a week before I graduated, I got the call that I got the job which I was stoked about,” Mr Farrell said.

“It’s been an incredibly rewarding experience being part of and learning from everyone– it’s given me the launching pad I need to be able to look for more work in the future.”

BESIX Watpac Workforce Training & Development Manager Tim Lyne said the project’s commitment to fostering employment opportunities and proactively seeking apprentices was instrumental in exceeding the target.

“Supporting local employment opportunities was an important aspect of this project,” Mr Lyne said.

“From finding apprentices who were ready to embark on their career, to providing support throughout their journey on the project, BESIX Watpac in partnership with local subcontractors and government have jump-started the careers of so many young people.

“It’s important our industry and both the training and education sectors work together to make sure the construction industry has the workforce to deliver the pipeline of work coming to market in the next 10 years.

“We also need to focus on all pathways into the industry, from apprenticeships through to the para-professional education route including design, architecture, and engineering.

“Helping our clients to establish targets beyond state-based policies at the early stages of a project is where we can make the biggest difference for the community.

“Once we have targets defined, we work closely with training organisations and industry bodies to create employment opportunities on our BESIX Watpac project sites and with our subcontractors.”

BESIX Watpac is also helping to forge career pathways through its Graduate & Early Career Program - a two-year program for emerging professionals to enhance their technical and business capabilities.

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