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Student journal - A mining engineering student's take on vacation work - The University of Western Australia / Rio Tinto

Kevin Steamer Graduate Mining Engineer, Rio Tinto
· 300 words, 2 min read

My journey into the mining industry was unusual and rather sporadic. Curiosity led me from a simple conversation with a guest lecturer on a random Wednesday afternoon to now it being two years later and finding myself a year into my Graduate program with Rio Tinto and ABSOLUTELY LOVING IT!

After working in a few commodities both open pit and underground as a Vacation Student, I elected to join Rio Tinto to learn the ins and outs of working with a global, world leading mining company.

Kevin Steamer Vacation Work.jpg

Rio Tinto’s two-year Graduate Program has a formal structure lead by appointed discipline champions that outline the key competencies that each graduate in said discipline should finish the program with. Even with this structure however, there is time allocated to complete electives adjacent or away from your core discipline, to broaden your understanding of your department, division, or product group.

For example, during our inductions we had some Mining Engineering graduates talk about their rotations to the commercial side of the business or to the Life of Mine Planning teams.

With a cohort size of over 400 graduates globally across various disciplines, not just STEM, with the support and encouragement of our graduate development team, we have been able to show courage to challenge the post Covid-19 virtual nature of events and bring more face-to-face learning and collaboration with other graduates.

If you had asked me before I began my graduate program what I thought the phrase “You are the leaders of the future” I would’ve said it was a rather overused and oversold, however the last 12 months has shown me that the leaders within Rio Tinto truly care about my development.

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