I had first heard about the Holcim Scholarship programme from one of my teachers at High School who encouraged me to apply. I was successful with my application and started my work at the Hastings Quarry as soon as I had finished year 13. The following 3 years I studied at the University of Otago studying a Bachelor of Science, majoring in Geology. I would come back home in the breaks to gain more work experience. After graduating from the University of Otago, I was offered a job at Holcim’s Kiwi Point Quarry as the Operations Support Coordinator in 2016.
I found the scholarship very beneficial, not only with finances but with real-world experience. It was great having a broader experience than my classmates as I had not just learnt the theoretical side of things with them, but had been practising the practical side in a real life example.
The scholarship allowed me to focus more on my study and less on worrying about a job and my student loan. I felt secure knowing that I already had a job to come back to between my university holidays. The experiences I got at Hastings were invaluable. I learnt how to operate the main plant, heavy machinery, the weighbridge, lab testing and how a quarry operates.
I would recommend the Holcim Scholarship programme to any student interested in pursuing a career in engineering, science or quarrying.
Photo: Melissa Giddens at Kiwi Point Quarry