Name: Ashley Beeby
Job: Heavy vehicle diesel mechanic at BHP
VET: VCE VET then Certificate III in Automotive Diesel
Location: Melbourne and Queensland (fly-in / fly-out)
This pathway has helped me be the best version of me
What do you do?
I’m a mechanic who specialises in very large vehicles with diesel engines, my current role involves working on mining vehicles and equipment at a large site in Queensland.
What was your VET journey?
I found the trade by accident when I was in Year 10. An employer came to my school to offer work experience and I thought maybe I could work on cars. I never thought I’d be able to work on trucks because I’m too small, but dad said to give it a go.
I did work experience, loved it, and signed up for a VET subject. By the time I was in Year 12, I’d started telling my parents about work without realising I’d planned my pathway. I applied for a job before my Year 12 exams even though I loved VCE and did really well in my exams.
I started my apprenticeship in January, straight after school finished.
What advice would you give to students who are considering a vocational pathway?
Definitely give it a shot! If you spend 6 months in a vocation and you don’t like it, uni won’t have gone away, VET won’t have gone anywhere.
This pathway has helped me be the best version of me.
What challenges did you face along the way?
The heavy vehicle industry is male-dominated and men naturally use their body weight to do the job. I’m quite small, so I can’t work the same way that they do. I’ve learnt how to be innovative to get the job done, and I can do the same work that men can do.
Work for a week at the mine, then fly back to Melbourne for a week at home.
Inside or outside?
Solo or teamwork?
Mix of both.
I get to be a better mechanic and it makes me happy!
People don't know?
There are so many opportunities to experiment with different pathways during your high school journey.
$2,000 per week for an experienced heavy vehicle diesel mechanic
Reviewed 20 July 2021