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How Caroline went from stilettos to steel caps, and Fuchsia to high-vis

Apr 26, 2021

Caroline Jervis Switched careers after 31 years in her role as a First-Class Qantas Cabin Crew member to Dump Truck Operator in the Pilbara for BHP.

Caroline Jervis Switched careers after 31 years in her role as a First-Class Cabin Crew member to Dump Truck Operator in the Pilbara.

In the land of blue-skies and opportunity, nothing can be truer for Caroline Jervis’ and her recent career change.

Like most airline employees, when Covid-19 hit, Caroline found her work opportunities grind to a halt and for the first time in 31 years, looking for a job. After stacking shelves at Woolworths overnight and coming to the realisation that the impacts of Covid-19 on travel and tourism were no longer short-term, Caroline began looking for a role that was more aligned to her interests and provided greater financial security.

At the same time, Programmed was redeploying hundreds of airline staff into other roles, many with Mining operators, to help service the large workforce that were still considered ‘essential’ and continuing to fly in and out of Australia’s major mining regions. Caroline secured herself a role with Programmed, doing temperature checks for FIFO workers in airports.

Watching the FIFO workers continue to travel and earn a living doing something they love, Caroline spoke with Programmed about opportunities for her and her husband that would provide a stable, long-term career. After six months with Programmed doing alternative work, Caroline applied for a role with Programmed as a FIFO Dump Truck Operator and was welcomed with open arms.

When asked what she loves about her career, Caroline says “I find it empowering because the contrast from being a flight attendant for 31 years and now – I’m out in the Pilbara driving trucks – which are huge – let me tell you, its empowering, and what I’ve shown to my family and my children is that life can change and then all of a sudden – opportunities are there and they exist, especially as a woman in my fifties, so to change careers this late in my life is fantastic.”

“The Programmed team are so friendly and kind- it’s an amazing life and its beautiful place to work.”

Her advice for those wanting to get into mining without any experience:

  • Get your resume up to date
  • Give Programmed a call
  • They have opportunities in all aspects of mining – close to Perth, in Pilbara, skilled or unskilled work.

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