Opening doors to a Navy career

5 June 2024

A group of young Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders spent a day walking in the shoes of a Navy sailor during a visit by the Clontarf Foundation to Fleet Base East, Sydney.

Twenty students were put through their paces in a challenging leadership and physical training session by HMAS Kuttabul physical training instructors, before lunch and a tour of amphibious ship, HMAS Canberra.

The Clontarf Foundation supports young Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders through education and exposure to future career opportunities outside of their immediate environment.

ADF Careers military recruiter, Corporal Timothy Spicer, said Defence’s relationship with the foundation has been going from strength to strength.

“In our friendship with the foundation, ADF Careers has been showcasing the many opportunities available to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders in the Navy,” Corporal Spicer said.

“More importantly, we are bridging a gap, as many of the students have never interacted with service personnel before, or witnessed the impressive technology and capabilities in Defence.”

To foster Navy’s relationship with the foundation, representatives from ADF Careers visit the group regularly to hold fitness sessions, play chess and engage with the students on a personal level.

Among the group were 16-year-old students and long-time friends, Lacklan Roach and Damien Campbell, who have already expressed their interest in a Navy career after graduating high school.

“I remember being invited to tour one of the ships a few years ago, and thought I’d want to work on a ship like that someday, in a navigation or communications role,” Mr Roach said.

Mr Campbell also shared his thoughts on the prospect of a Navy career.

“I’m interested in studying information technology, and if I can do that with Navy, and get to learn skills and gain experience, that would be great,” Mr Campbell said.

“If it wasn’t for days like this, we probably wouldn’t have thought a career in the Navy was possible.” 

Corporal Spicer said the Defence and Clontarf relationship was still relatively new, but ADF Careers hopes the relationship will continue to grow across all 148 Clontarf academies around Australia.

“It’s so important to bridge the gap between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders and our services, and this is a step in the right direction in fostering that relationship,” Corporal Spicer said.



Story type

Related services



Recommended stories