The renewable energy sector is growing at such a pace that demand for talent might outstrip supply. Monash University’s Faculty of Engineering had seen the opportunity and is meeting the task with its new Resources Engineering program.

“Renewable and alternative energy use is growing exponentially, but traditional coal and hydrocarbon energy sources will be required long into the future, to meet our ever-growing energy demands,” said associate professor Bre-Anne Sainsbury, founding director of the Resources Engineering program.

Undergraduate degrees offered include renewable energy engineering, oil and gas engineering, geological engineering and mining engineering.

“We’re engaging with industry on multiple levels to ensure our students will be absolutely at the forefront of technology,” Professor Sainsbury said. “Our industry education partners will provide practicing engineering professionals to help us deliver current and dynamic content, to ensure our graduates are relevant and industry ready.”

A key objective is to give students the opportunity to develop professional networks and secure jobs before they graduate, said Debra Stirling, chair of the Mining and Resources Advisory Board who helped develop the new Resources Engineering program.

“We’re definitely giving the students a practical skill set so that they can hit the ground running,” Stirling said. “Essentially, we want to ensure they’re job ready, with a real understanding of operating in a global environment with multiple factors to consider. That’s what industry is looking for.”

The end of the resources boom doesn’t bother her.

“There are always going to be jobs in the resources sector, and our new program covers the full spectrum.  We’re never going to stop needing minerals – for technology and almost everything we use every day,” she said.