Motoring ahead

Headshot of Jakeb Waddell
Jakeb WaddellNorth West Telegraph
Amelia Blanco is set to receive her Certificate III in Light Vehicle Mechanical Technology from North Regional TAFE.
Camera IconAmelia Blanco is set to receive her Certificate III in Light Vehicle Mechanical Technology from North Regional TAFE. Credit: Jakeb Waddell.

In a world where many are concerned about the threat technological booms would have on their jobs in the automotive industry, the changes appear to have opened doors for one Hedland resident.

Amelia Blanco is due to become the first Pilbara woman in more than three years to be issued a Certificate III in Light Vehicle Mechanical Technology, a document she hopes will pave a pathway for a long-term mechanical career.

The 24-year-old, daughter of Hedland Automotive and Automatic Services owner Camilo Blanco, is set to receive the accolade from North Regional TAFE by early next year and said it was something she had her mind set on since high school.

But Mr Blanco believes his daughter could be the first in a wave of new females entering the mechanical sector, as the developments open the door for more opportunity.

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He said the automotive industry was at the tip of the spear in technology and was no longer the “old, grease-monkey job of the 1970s”.

“You have to know how to use computers, read complicated wiring diagrams, understand and diagnose electronic components,” he said.

“These changes have created a perfect opportunity for females to take over a male-dominated industry, as they are well suited to being the new generation of mechanical automotive specialists.

“And electric cars are going to change the job again in the near future — incredibly quick and females have the ability to adapt to these changes.”

Ms Blanco said the consensus coming out of high school was to not go into the profession based on her gender, but felt the attitude had shifted.

“It is a good skill to have, I wanted to be able to travel on my own and not worry, that was a main factor behind entering the field,” she said.

“Many things here require you being a bit of a brute to get a job done, but there has never been a situation where I could not find another way to do it.

“I see the change, it is getting more based around computing and electronics and I hope there are a few more women coming through.”

NRT Pilbara training services director Jeff Cooper said Ms Blanco’s achievement would be an empowering demonstration of industry equality.

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