QUT Real Potential Real Futures - Josh

Uploaded by TheQUTube on 02.02.2012

Because you want to do something you like doing, or love doing, and you know rocks has
always been where I’ve been at.
I reckon when I was about six-ish digging a hole in the back yard, looking for gold,
as simple as that.
We had an earth science class at Maroochydore High, and we did an aptitude test.
I had an offer to go to uni, and at the time it wasn’t for me.
I left cabinet making and went into retail and from there I went to gemmology.
I had a relationship break-up, and so I had a bit of time out to consider the, you know
direction in life, and I did caring work with the challenging behaviour kids.
The different spectrums of Aspergers and autism. It was a bit more about giving back to society
a little bit… this felt like doing something positive for some young kids.
The underlying theme of minerals and rocks kept coming through and on top of that there
was the aspect of having the opportunity to do the course when I left high school, so
it felt like unfinished business a little bit, and something I wanted to challenge myself
to do, so I headed back to geology.
I just kind of went for it. I had no computer skills.
And there was a few moments where it was like, “What have I, what have I done?”
I felt like I really had to focus on the course 100%, and with the travelling to and from
uni, which was four hours a day on top of your lectures and you’ve got a baby that
might wake up a couple of times in the night.
You can burn out pretty quick.
I did AusStudy and had a parenting payment, so that helped sort of cope, and had some
savings to use for emergencies.
We were sort of living in a sort of debt type of thing, off the credit card basically.
The Learning Potential Fund was a huge help.
I was putting off purchasing textbooks because you know obviously the finances were quite
tight, so when the Fund came in, it was bang, I could get those textbooks, I could pre-book
the excursions, which was lots of money as well.
You don’t have to worry about where the next bill is going to get paid from, or where
the food is coming from.
It was a huge relief, you know. It was something that definitely took the pressure off, in
a lot of ways.
Personally you know when you’re in a stressful time.
Little things can become big things, they magnify, on top of having children.
I probably felt like I belonged a little bit more, funnily enough.
It felt like there’s a bit of support there, a bit of hope.
So the Learning Potential Fund was a huge aspect of my success at uni definitely.
I just went straight, applied for a couple of jobs and off I went, out into the bush.
The first job was looking at coal.
We were with a rig to find out where the coals were, what depth they were at, how thick they
were, and obviously some geotechnical analysis.
You communicated with landowners if need be.
The fieldwork’s a bit more adventurous.
It’s hot, it’s cold at night, there’s quite a few characters out in the bush.
It’s hard work at times.
You’re getting that data and getting to make maps and cross-sections, and getting
to look at it in more detail.
I guess it’s a constant learning process for me.
It’s always very challenging you know, when you’re talking like $500 million or a billion
dollars, so you get that sense of like, “Righto, let’s get this right”.
One aspect that prevented me from doing geology initially was the environmental impact.
But then I reconsidered and I thought well, I might be able to make a decision that says
let’s lessen the impact by taking on these, these decisions.
My focus right now is to probably do at least 5 to 10 years as a geologist, to I feel that
would give me the confidence that I’m a good geologist, I have knowledge and history
I feel like I’m an apprentice still you know, so I’ve got to do my trade now (laughs).
If you’re someone that’s struggling financially then I’d just say go for it, you know regardless.
If you did an audit of where you spend your money over your lifetime I’m sure there’s
plenty of mistakes along the line you know.
Even if you come out of it and not do the job, you’ll come out of it with confidence
and some sort of knowledge that you can use somewhere else.
Grab those opportunities when you can, and try as hard as you can, and don’t, don’t
be afraid to fail, because we all have our moments of failure, and that’s where you
learn a lot, the most, you know and you get stronger from it.