Jobs expo gives kids a flying start
THE Royal Australian Navy knows exactly how to steal the show.
It captured young hearts and minds when it "dropped in" to a careers expo in Lismore yesterday in a state-of-the-art naval helicopter.
The MRH-90 Taipan comes with all the bells and whistles you would expect and is a sizeable beast with two Rolls Royce engines.
Moments after it and nine crew members landed, hundreds of students had converged on the oval outside Trinity Catholic College to get a close look and quiz crew members about a career in the Navy.
Staff from the Navy, Army, and Air Force were already stationed at the expo but the arrival of the helicopter was the cherry on the military cake.
It was made possible by former Trinity student Gavin Johnson, who graduated in the 1980s.
Chief Petty Officer Johnson sought permission for the detour as the Taipan was already en route from the HMAS Albatross base in Nowra, its home, to Brisbane for a major overhaul.
"I asked my CO what were the chances of being able to call in on my old high school, and it happened to coincide with delivering this aircraft to business for overhaul," CPO Johnson said.
He said it was a boon for some of the 1000 students attending the Summerland Future Options Expo, as they were able to get a first-hand glance at life in the Fleet Air Arm of the Navy.
Of course not everyone at the expo was keen on joining on the armed forces, but there was plenty of other information available for students.
This included details on course offerings from universities, North Coast TAFE and trade courses.
Local employers were also on hand to talk about job opportunities and other career options.