A scholarship aimed at addressing the shortage of engineers in the resources sector has been awarded to first-year engineering student Mufaro Tom from Muswellbrook.
ARISE Scholarships, awarded by Australian Resources Industry Skills and Education (ARISE) and supported by BHP, are open to students in Year 12 at ARISE partner schools. Mufaro Tom, from Muswellbrook High School, was awarded a $5,000 scholarship.
For Mufaro, the first student from outside of Queensland to win an ARISE Scholarship, engineering is a natural progression from his love of maths and physics. Inspired by his father, who works in the mining industry, Mufaro is undertaking a Bachelor of Engineering in the Mining Transfer Program at the University of Newcastle.
Mufaro's scholarship will help him to afford essentials, such as textbooks, as he sets himself up for his degree.
"It will also take the pressure off working during semesters, so I'll be able to dedicate more time to studying and reaching my educational goals," Mufaro said.
"Muswellbrook High School's staff and students are thrilled for Mufaro," said Principal Kylie Fabri.
"He was a valued member of our Student Representative Council and was also selected in 2021 as one of 20 Rural Youth Ambassadors across NSW tasked with finding ways to improve education for rural students."ARISE Manager of Skills and Education Matthew Heskett said that this scholarship is designed to help some of the best and brightest young Australians as they pursue careers in the resources sector.
"Mufaro gravitated towards engineering because of his love of STEM subjects, and because he's had exposure to the resources sector during his school years," said Matthew.
"This scholarship will allow him more freedom and flexibility during his studies so that he can focus on his educational experiences."
BHP NSW Energy Coal Vice President Adam Lancey congratulated Muswellbrook local Mufaro for being the first NSW student to be awarded an ARISE Scholarship. "As an aspiring engineer and inspiring young leader, Mufaro will be an asset to Australian mining."
The Australian Resources Industry Skills and Education (ARISE) Initiative was established to broaden the geographic reach of the highly successful industry-led education and skills training initiative, QMEA, in states and territories across Australia.
The initiative encourages secondary school students into STEM-related careers in the resources sector, with a focus on female and Indigenous participation. The initiative is made possible through the support of foundation partners, BHP and BMA, and provides students and teachers the opportunity to experience the resources sector operations through on-site and in-school activities, flagship camps, and scholarships.