School-based Engineering to Diesel Fitting Apprenticeship

Mitch Wilks (right) and Patrick Logisitics representatives

Mitchell Wilks was an Australian Apprentice who gained a Diesel Fitting trade Certificate III in Engineering (Mechanical Trade) with Patrick Port Logistics, after completing a School-based Traineeship and full-time Apprenticeship with the Brisbane-based company.

Mitch Wilks first started with MIGAS in 2008 as an Australian School-based Trainee working on a Certificate II in Engineering with Patrick Port Logistics.

He was always a “hands on” kind of person and had previously done work experience in a diesel fitting shed. Mitch really enjoyed the mechanical side of things and decided to give it a crack. After completing his traineeship in 2010, Mitch continued with MIGAS and Patrick Port Logistics as a full time Australian Apprentice working towards a Diesel Fitting Certificate III in Engineering – Mechanical Trade. Mitch completed his apprenticeship on the 5th December 2014, and was offered a position as a Diesel Fitter tradesmen with Patrick Port Logistics which he commenced in January 2015.

The best part of Mitch’s job is attending the break downs, he says, and diagnosing the faults.

“They can be at client sites or on the side of the highway. It’s interesting to me because you really have to use your mind and what you have on hand to figure out what the problem is.”

“My first break down is the most memorable to me. It was maybe late in my 2nd year or early 3rd year of my apprenticeship. It wasn’t overly difficult, just bypassing blown break boosters on the side of the road. It just was memorable to me because Patrick had the trust in me to head out and take care of that myself. It may not be the most technical thing, but it meant a lot to me.”

Of his apprenticeship, Mitch says it was a great building block for his future career.

“I just want to get more experience in the field and see where I can go from there," Mitch says.

Mitch highly recommends doing an Australian School-based Traineeship before going into the full time apprenticeship.

“It’s definitely worth their while, just because it looks better on the resume and you’ve got that head start over everyone else. You’ve also got some experience at TAFE and in the workshop so you know what you’re in for.”

For other people wanting to get into an apprenticeship, and those who have already started, Mitch says to just stick with it.

“After the first year or two, you know, the pay gets better and all those little jobs they give you eventually get bigger and better. Show your boss that you’re there to work and you don’t mind doing those little jobs, because it will pay off in the long run.”

“I am the youngest here at Patrick by a fair margin. It will be great to help new apprentices along and show them the ropes.”

“I just want to say thank you to Patrick for giving me a chance to get an apprenticeship out of my school-based traineeship, and for keeping me on afterwards. I appreciate the show of faith and confidence in me and all the opportunities they’ve given me. I look forward to continuing on with them as a tradesperson.”

Pictured is Patrick Port Logistics' Shane Elder (Supervisor) and Greg Ubank (Manager) with MIGAS Apprentice Mitch Wilks

Interested in the same trade career as Mitch? Read up on Diesel Fitting Apprenticeships.

Check out available Diesel Fitting jobs or Engineering jobs available now and apply online.

Can't see what you're after? Submit a general application in the trade area of your choice and go into the MIGAS database ready for when a suitable position becomes available.

Published 18 March 2015