Biviano sisters, Emily and Olivia, wisely chose to ignore people who suggested their career preferences were best suited to males.
They followed their intuition and applied anyway. Now, they’re excited to be launching their respective careers in Wilmar’s Herbert mills.
Happily employed at Wilmar as a Cadet Draftperson, Emily had no hesitation encouraging her younger sibling to apply for an electrical apprenticeship when Wilmar advertised its 2021 apprenticeships last year.
The sisters said their parents were equally supportive of the career move.
“I didn’t know what I wanted to do and Mum said: ‘What about this?’ and I thought about it and I thought: ‘That is actually what I want to do’,” Olivia said.
“The apprenticeship applications came out and Mum said: ‘Why don’t you just try? The only thing that can go bad is that you don’t get it’.”
Olivia is among five females who started their apprenticeships with Wilmar this year – making up 20 per cent of the intake.
Meanwhile, Emily is into her third year of a six-year cadetship with Wilmar’s Asset Management team, which involves completing an Associate Degree in Mechanical Engineering.
Emily said she and Olivia were both attracted to the practical aspects of their jobs.
“We both like doing hands-on things a lot,” she said.
Like Olivia, she is currently based at Victoria Mill, but she lived in the Burdekin for six months last year while she worked across Wilmar’s four Burdekin region mills.
“I really enjoy the travel aspect of my role,” she said.
“You get to spend time with other engineers. They’ve all got different experiences that they’re really happy to share with you.”
Olivia said she was eager to learn from Victoria Mill’s many experienced tradespeople, who were equally willing to pass on their knowledge.
“Everyone here is really supportive and welcoming,” she said.
It may not be long before both sisters are part-time students, with Olivia setting her sights on an Associate Degree in Electrical Engineering.
“In the workshop, the people who have done it say it’s a really good outcome,” she said.
Both sisters look forward to carving out long-term careers with Wilmar.
“There are just so many opportunities; so many different pathways you can look into,” Olivia said.
“There are so many doors that can open for you in the business. You don’t have to stay in the same spot for your whole career,” Emily said.
“I can see myself being one of those people who ends up here for 40 years.”