Clontarf kids check out Hastings Deering careers

13 August 2018

It may have started with a cricket carnival trip to Brisbane   for the students of the Clontarf Foundation, but it ended with it a serious message highlighting the prospects of international employment opportunities with Hastings Deering.  

Hastings Deering, the Caterpillar dealer for Northern Territory, Queensland, Papua New Guinea, New Caledonia and the Solomon Islands, played host to the boys showcasing apprenticeship opportunities well within their grasp.

General Manager – People and External Affairs  , Vincent Cosgrove said as an equal opportunity employer Hastings Deering actively looked to recruit across the broad community spectrum including female, mature-age and indigenous apprentices. 

“As a company we are keen to align ourselves with organisations with a shared belief of long term investment in capability building for young Indigenous men which will result in benefits for the individual students as well as the local and broader community,” Mr Cosgrove said.  



“As such, an important component of the arrangement between the Foundation and Hastings Deering is the development of a strong relationship between the students, Academy staff, communities, Hastings Deering head office and offices in Queensland and the Northern Territory.

“We are committed to promoting apprenticeships with in the Aboriginal and Torres sectors in order to “close the gap”. Hastings Deering employees are encouraged to actively participate in activities with our students.  An important part of our philosophy is to provide opportunities for our students to interact with new people, places and situations. These are experiences where students can practise their social skills, build their confidence and increase their understanding of the opportunities available to them.”

The Clontarf Foundation exists to improve the education, discipline, self-esteem, life skills and employment prospects of young Aboriginal men and by doing so, equips them to participate more meaningfully in society.

The Foundation’s programs are delivered through a network of Academies, each of which operates in partnership with a school or college. Football is used to attract teenaged Indigenous men to school and then keep them there. In order to remain in the program, participants must continue to work at school and embrace the objectives of the Foundation.  

The organisation enjoys a special relationship with Hastings Deering in many communities across Queensland and the Northern Territory where both Clontarf and Hastings Deering have operations. These are all communities in dire need of positive outcomes for their young Indigenous men.

“It is one thing to get these young men to school: it’s well and truly another to show them there are employment opportunities for them, “ Mr Cosgrove said, “The beauty of an apprenticeship based on Cat machinery – is that it is your ticket to work anywhere in the world where you find Cat machinery. 

“Suddenly these boys can see worldwide opportunities: just ask Dakota Knight. The 22 year old diesel fitter apprentice came to us via the Clontarf Foundation and this year alone has been recognised as a finalist in the Austin Asche Apprentice of the Year: staged each year by the Northern Territory Government’s Department of Trade, Business and Innovation and was also a finalist in the prestigious NT Training Awards. 

“This year Hastings Deering put on four apprentices from indigenous backgrounds.” 

Hastings Deering employs around 3000 people with 5% of its workforce apprentices employed in diesel fitting, auto electrical and fabrication roles. Since 1989 Hastings Deering has trained almost 1500 apprentices and in 2017 remains one of the largest trainers of apprentice diesel fitters in Australia. 

Last year Hastings Deering offered 84 fourth-year apprentices on-going roles, their four years of hard work paying off with continued employment. This year 18 of the apprentices come from Queensland (Brisbane, Mt Isa, Rockhampton, Mackay, Townsville, Cairns) and three from the NT. 

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