“The best part of my time at UQ was being in the laboratories running my PhD analyses.”
Why did you study Geological Sciences?
I decided to do a Bachelor of Science (majoring in Geology) because my father is an engineer who has worked in the oil and energy industry for over 30 years. Initially, I decided to go to school to be involved in oil exploration.
What was the best part of your time at UQ?
The best part of my time at UQ was being in the laboratories running my PhD analyses, especially when the analyses where performed in the middle of the night. I could stay up interpreting my data and strategically advancing my research. I loved it very much.
What does a typical day in your job look like?
At the Operations I work at in Texas, a typical day includes a management team meeting to discuss the activities occurring that day and for the week to come. Topics include safety of employees, product shipment, quality, short-term mine planning, maintenance, etc.
As a mine manager, my foremost duty is to ensure on a daily basis that the ore quality sent to the plant exceeds Lhoist customers’ expectations. We want to make sure that our customers are also market leaders in their industries and I take that very seriously. I spend time planning and analysing QC data to determine locations where we can mine ore with uniformly good quality, and discuss this with our laboratory and mining teams. I inspect walls at the quarry, visit blasted locations and take care of surveying. I also inspect locations that are environmentally sensitive such as wetlands and mitigated areas.
Later, I plan the next locations for QCs and areas to be mined. I document and/or archive the activities that occurred that day, making sure that our team is following the work and recommendations of our Mine Geologist and Regional Engineer developed for the current year and 5-year mining plan.
Some days I have visitors that need guidance within the mine. These visitors can be colleagues from the company or from agencies related to mining activities that Lhoist maintains good working relationships with.
Last but not least, part of my day is also devoted to developing and updating safety procedures for our Operations.
What advice do you have for someone deciding how to start their career?
Choose a university with a good reputation where you can learn real content and how to apply knowledge and good practices to your future career. UQ is definitely a good place to study!