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Brisbane and Melbourne picked for Qantas engineering academy

written by Adam Thorn | June 27, 2023

Qantas’s upcoming engineering academy will have training centres in both Brisbane and Melbourne, the airline has announced.

The Flying Kangaroo has also revealed the program, which aims to train up to 300 people each year from 2025, will be run in partnership with Aviation Australia.

It comes after Qantas said in March it would create more than 8,500 roles in the next ten years – more than offsetting all its redundancies during COVID-19.

It also follows concerns that major airlines and the government haven’t been doing enough to address a developing lack of engineers, which has already seen Rex cut back services.


In an attempt to address the problem, all of Qantas’s engineering trainees will be employees of the business and, therefore, will be paid to learn.

Aviation Australia CEO Bill Horrocks said the company’s training combines “job-ready skills” and education.

“Our training facilities will provide students with the day-to-day experience of a working hangar, as well as supervised training on aircraft, for a seamless transition into operational environments,” he said.

Of the 300 intake, around 200 will be eventually hired by the Flying Kangaroo, with others free to pursue jobs for rival airlines or Defence.

The Academy’s curriculum will include both classroom and practical lessons on engines and aircraft systems before students move onto supervised training on aircraft.

Qantas CEO Alan Joyce said the airline has a “proud history” of having some of the best engineers in the world.

“Training is in our DNA. We’re delivering around 2 million hours in training in 2023 alone, and like our Pilot Academy, this will build our pipeline of talent for both the Qantas Group and Australian aviation more broadly.

“We’ve already had almost 1000 people register their interest in joining the Academy and it’s a great opportunity for people looking at a career in aviation.”

Anyone interested in positions at the Engineering Academy can register their interest here.

Pre-pandemic, Qantas employed 29,000 people in 2019 but made around 8,000 redundant in 2020. The airline said in March that it believes it will employ 32,000 people by 2033, compared with 23,500 now.

The announcement comes alongside a major fleet renewal program that means it will either buy or have purchase rights to up to 299 narrow-body and 12 wide-body aircraft for delivery over the next decade.

This includes nine more A321s that it will then convert into freighters; 12 Airbus A350-1000 jets to launch Project Sunrise; and 20 Airbus A321XLRs and 29 A220-300s to fly its domestic routes, which includes an option to purchase up to 85 additional Airbuses through to 2034.

Jetstar, meanwhile, is currently beginning the delivery of 38 A320neos, comprised of 18 A321 LR and 20 A321XLR aircraft.

CEO Alan Joyce last year said the A220 and A320s would become the “backbone” of Qantas’s domestic fleet for the next 20 years.

“Their range and economics will make new direct routes possible, including serving regional cities better,” he said.

Joyce added these new aircraft and engines would reduce emissions by at least 15 per cent if running on traditional fossil fuels and even more so if using sustainable aviation fuels (SAFs).

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