Meet Sarah, our new Far North Queensland Regional Engagement Manager! Sarah has worked in the construction industry since she was in high school and says starting work at CSQ feels like coming home to her. Taking over from her predecessor, Rooster (Robyn Van Rooye), Sarah has big shoes to fill, but she is excited to get to work and make the role her own.

What is your background in the construction industry?

My parents have a civil construction company which has given me a lot of experience with machinery operating, workplace health and safety, tender writing and estimating. I moved over to mining at Port Headland and worked for a couple of years doing workplace health and safety, a bit of contract admin and site admin. When I decided I didn’t want to work in mining anymore I came home. I firstly got into a bit of labour hire, and then I got into the Vocational Education and Training (VET) industry working in Registered Training Organisations (RTOs) and that lead me to Construction Skills Queensland (CSQ).

Where is ‘home’ for you?

Home is Mossman, but I’ve lived and worked in Cairns for about 8 years now since I came back from mining. Growing up in Mossman we used to holiday up the Cape a lot, and I go up there for camping trips often. I’ve also been to Thursday Island a few times previously for work too, and all throughout the Cape actually. I have a fair few good connections throughout the area, so it is nice to be able to take over the Cape as my new region.

How long have you known of CSQ?

To be honest, I didn’t know about CSQ until maybe three years ago. I found out about CSQ through one of our local RTOs here, Pro-Lift. They let me know about CSQ funding and I actually used CSQ funding to upgrade some of my machinery tickets with them; it was really good. I suppose, living in Mossman, its takes longer for us to receive that information, which will be a goal of mine to create more awareness regionally.

What would you say is your main goal for your role?

I really want to focus on small businesses and creating awareness for what’s out there for them from CSQ – not just the training they can get to upskill their staff, but also giving back to their communities through that training. A lot of the small businesses, in Mossman, the Tablelands, and all throughout the Cape are heavily involved in community engagement and sporting clubs. So, the more I can help them to grow, through training and upskilling, the more that they can give back to their communities. That’s what I really like about it. My long-term goals are to create awareness, help people get into training and upskilling, and allow businesses to diversify.

What are your early impressions of your new role as well as CSQ as an organisation?

I absolutely love CSQ. I think they have a good company culture; I really resonate with what their goals are and what they’re striving to achieve, and I think it’s needed in the construction industry. I think there are still a lot of people who don’t know about CSQ funding so I’m really excited to be the person who gets to go out there and create that awareness and tell people about how good it is what we do, and what we can hand back to them.