On Monday 21 November 45 Follow the Dream students from Broome Senior High School, St Mary’s Broome, Governor Stirling High School and Derby District High School, came together for a ‘Worley innovation challenge’ in Broome. This challenge connected education and industry to bring brilliant minds together to take on real world issues facing companies today. Previous to the day students had engaged in online and face to face learning with the Polly Farmer Foundation to better understand elements, compounds, the periodic table and the carbon cycle.

Key Facts

  • A team of experts including Worley global vice president of hydrogen Ned Baxter and senior vice president Jess Pringle, and Polly Farmer Foundation STEM and Innovation manager Anna Ritzema are in Broome to conduct an ‘Innovation Challenge’ with Follow the Dream students to investigate what makes a company Carbon-net zero and how this is achieved.
  • 45 Follow the Dream students and alumni attended the workshop, including students from St Mary’s College, Broome Senior High School as well as students from Derby District High School and Governor Stirling Senior High School who were flown to Broome to participate.
  • It is the 25 year anniversary of Follow the Dream, the flagship Polly Farmer Foundation program providing tutoring, mentoring and wrap around support services to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander high school students.

Students were able to learn directly from top Worley engineers who were flown in for the day, including Ned Baxter, Global vice president of Hydrogen and senior vice president Jess Pringle, plus Polly Farmer Foundation’s STEM and Innovation manager Anna Ritzema. In addition to being a leading industry expert, Ned Baxter is also a former St Mary’s College student and spoke to the students about his career journey. Students were also invited to participate in VR with Connor Clark, one of Worley’s engineers.

The purpose of the Innovation Challenge is to engage young Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students through exposure to STEM career pathways and future roles. Worley representatives explained to students their company commitment to sustainability, future energy resourcing and how the effect of carbon and hydrogen played a key part in the future of manufacturing.

The day concluded with students pitching their carbon net zero innovations using “Stop Motion” to the Worley team. All teams presented some fantastic ideas in reducing the carbon footprint. We look forward to seeing some amazing scientists in the near future.

Polly Farmer Foundation STEM and Innovation manager Anna Ritzema said there was huge demand for careers in STEM and the workshop was very topical with green energy projects currently happening in the Kimberley.

For Governor Stirling students, it was the first time on a plane and the trip has opened many new experiences and opportunities. They also met PFF alumni from Broome including artist Marlie Albert, whose artwork features on Worley’s new corporate Polo shirts which were worn by students on the day, and Khan John, FF Motorola scholarship holder who has just completed his Bachelor of Engineering and Bachelor of Commerce at Curtin University.