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Courtney Elliot

4.30 AM

Fly-in Day. Early start, so luckily, I packed my bag the night before! I usually wear my PPE on the plane, as we usually head straight to site once we land. Necessities for the flight include headphones, a jumper (in case it gets cold), snacks and a book. My roster is a 2:1 so I’ll be at work for the next two weeks, then I get a week off and do it all again! 

See you later Perth.

courtney with a helmet

6.00 AM

Board Flight. I got lucky and got booked on the ‘late’ 6.20 am flight to Newman – sometimes it’s a 5.30 am take off! I board the plane to Newman; this is the closest town to the Jimblebar Mine I work on. I already know the playlist I am going to listen to during the flight. The breakfast on the early flight is ok considering its aeroplane food, but the best part is that the flight is usually quiet – because everyone is usually still half asleep!

8.00 AM

Touch-down in Newman! Once we land, we usually get picked up at the airport by one of our colleagues.

The trip to site takes around an hour. It’s always good catching up with my work friends en route to site, everyone is always eager to hear about what you got up to in your time off. A lot can happen in a week! So, we will typically spend the car ride catching up on what we’ve missed in the past week.

site meeting

9.00 AM

Time to get to work. There’s such a variety of work at Monadelphous, which I think is a great highlight of the grad program. No day is the same! I typically perform a variety of different tasks from day to day; I love this because I get to tap into my different skillsets and build on prior experiences. We work across a variety of projects for a diverse list of clients; I think this is the most exciting part of being a contractor. My morning usually consists of meetings and prestart with our crews. I then usually attend internal meetings, client meetings and then a few more meetings with our subcontractor representatives. This is then followed by site visits to our work areas where I conduct quality inspections.

tractor on site

10.00 AM

Smoko time. On-site, the facilities we have access to are quite basic as they are generally temporary facilities, but everything you need is there – an endless supply of coffee and a pie warmer! It’s really about what you make of it – on one of my previous projects we grew a small garden from seeds which was a good mini-project to have on the side. I’ve also witnessed many hard-working individuals around me rise to success through hard work and commitment to the company. So, for me and many like me, smoko time is a great time for everyone to take a moment during the day to relax and get to know each other on a more personal level. 

10.30 AM

Back to work. First up discussions with suppliers (usually over the phone), followed by some reporting and examining the progress of the job against the project schedule. Next, I’ll take a scheduled look ahead to see what is needed from me to prepare for upcoming construction activities. I then spend the early arvo doing some ‘on the spot’ problem solving, debriefing and planning for the next day. The best part about the graduate program at Monadelphous is that there are lots of different opportunities within the company, this means many different career avenues you can take – it’s all about giving it a go and working it out along the way!

site view

2.00 PM

Lunchtime. Camp food isn’t home food, but it isn’t bad – I usually would eat a variety of food including salads, wraps, smoothies, sausage rolls and whatever desserts they have available! I often sit with my co-workers; there’s always plenty of chat and friendly banter. Lots of Monadelphous employees have been around for a long time – so it’s fascinating hearing about their work experiences and how they got to where they are today

lunch with workmates

6.00 PM

Knock off time. Depending on the roster, knock-off time is usually 5.30 pm or 6.00 pm. We share utes and drive back to camp together, which can take 10 minutes to half an hour depending on the location.

6.30 PM

Camp Life. The rooms at camp are always standard – bed, desk, closet, TV and bathroom. I’ve been based at some great camps that have had gyms, movie rooms, pubs, small shops, mini-golf courses, squash courts and swimming pools. I used to love including swimming into my after-work routine – the Pilbara sky is quite nice to look at on a warm evening from the pool! It’s also fun catching up with colleagues for dinner or attending team barbeques. When I get back to camp, I usually go to the gym, have dinner with colleagues, talk to friends and family back home, watch TV and relax. What I have for dinner usually depends on what is available, but my favourite camp meals are schnitzel and veggies, soup and fish and chips (usually on Fridays).

courtney's close-up

7.00 PM

been a long day! I usually take this time to relax either by reading a book or prepping for the next day.

8.00 PM

Lights out. While onsite, I try to make sure I have a good sleep. I usually get up early the next morning, sometimes having a 4:30 am or 5:30 am start, depending on my roster. Good night!