Building a naval career

Launching his career with BAE Systems, Engineering graduate Matthew is enjoying the challenge of working on
Australia’s largest shipbuilding program.

By the 2050s Australia’s Naval Shipbuilding Program plans to build 70 vessels for the Royal Australian Navy, including nine Hunter Class Frigates. Achieving this huge undertaking will require the collaboration of a range of organisations across the country and the employment of over 15,000 people to design, build and maintain the vessels.

As Associate Project Manager at BAE Systems, Flinders University Engineering graduate Matthew (BEngCivil(Hons) ’18) will be part of this ground-breaking project.

“It’s really exciting being a part of Australia’s largest shipbuilding program to deliver the Hunter Class Frigates – I have joined right at the beginning of this project which will be running for the next 30 years,” says Matthew.

“The opportunities for STEM related careers are endless.”

In his second year of study at Flinders University in 2015, Matthew was excited to be part of the first group to study Engineering at the purpose-built Tonsley site – a development that meant his small cohort would have closer connections with industry. This move and the strong connections with industry has proved successful for graduate engineering careers, and on finishing his studies Matthew quickly secured a position on BAE Systems’ graduate program.

Matthew says the skills he developed at Flinders, such as communication, critical thinking and the ability to work independently, have been incredibly useful.

“One of the biggest takeaways was the ability to present and communicate ideas and technical topics to a broad audience in a confident and concise manner – without the use of cue cards. This forced us to learn our content thoroughly and communicate effectively and confidently to large groups.”

In his first 12 months at BAE Systems Matthew feels fortunate to have been mentored by a senior manager in the business, which helped him to learn and grow both personally and professionally.

“His messages were always simple but effective and revolved around a growth mindset, stakeholder engagement and management, and thinking about things in different ways,” says Matthew. “I still apply a lot of this thinking on a daily basis at work.”

Open to new experiences and possibilities, Matthew is enjoying the challenge of working at a large organisation where change is the norm and where he can contribute to Australia’s Naval Shipbuilding Program.

Learn more about studying Engineering at Flinders University

The Naval Shipbuilding College workforce register provides free one-to-one careers guidance and helps connect students and graduates to job opportunities in Australia’s rapidly growing and highly technological naval shipbuilding industry. Roles needed in the coming years include software, mechanical and electrical engineering, project management and support roles in HR, legal and communications. Register now 

Posted in
College of Science and Engineering Defence and national security Engineering Our recent graduates Science

Leave a Reply