Australian Industry Trade College (AITC) student Keeley Tilbrook is in her final year of high school and has signed up as an electrical school-based apprentice.

The year 12 student joined the college in 2020 in pursuit of a trade-based career.

Keeley’s father is also an electrician, however Keeley wanted to try several different trades to ensure she found her perfect fit.

At the AITC, students spend half the term in the classroom and the other half in work experience or a paid apprenticeship.

“When I first started at the AITC, I didn’t really know which industry I wanted to work in.

“I tried metal fabrication as well as some carpentry work and bricklaying.

“I started some work experience with Dawson Electric at the end of year 10 and loved it,” Keeley said.

Keeley’s hard work impressed Dawson Electric and this is where she is now signed into a school-based apprenticeship.

“I did my first block of work experience at the end of year 10 in November 2020. I couldn’t go back there until September 2021 and on my second block of work experience, they offered to sign me up,” said Keeley.

Keeley loves the diversity she has in her trade and is the youngest apprentice at her workplace.

“I’m a first-year apprentice so it’s good being able to learn from my team. Every day you learn more, and you grow,” she said.

It is exciting that young women can pursue careers in male-dominated industries.

Keeley is very well supported by a team of uplifting tradespeople who also support the importance of Keeley completing year 12 at the AITC.

“My boss was a teacher and knows how important it is. If one day you want to do something else or move into electrical engineering, its importance to have had completed senior school.”

Keeley recommends those considering industry-based pathways to consider enrolling at the AITC.

“Coming here you’re going to figure out what trade you want,” she said.

“Joining the AITC is a great pathway. You can find a career pathway, finish year 12 with your QCE, save money and have no university debt.”