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Start your career at Whitehaven

From engineering and geology to electrical and mechanical trades, there is a huge variety of ways to start your career at Whitehaven Coal. 

Whichever path you choose, you’ll get the opportunity to: 

  • Work at one of Australia’s fastest-growing and most exciting mining companies 
  • Develop your technical skills and build core capabilities through on the job training at one or several of our operations 
  • Work in a supportive, team-based, environment where you’ll be encouraged to learn, ask questions and be involved in day-to-day operations 
  • Work with some of Australia’s leading industry practitioners and experts on the practical application of the skills you have learned at university or an RTO 
  • Receive feedback to assist your ongoing development 
  • Be part of a team that values respect, diversity, creativity and results. 

As a participant in the Graduate Program you will gain exposure to either underground or open cut mining. Whitehaven is committed to the longevity of our employees’ careers and upon successful completion of the program, and where a position exists, we will transition our Graduates into permanent employees.

Our Graduate Program runs for two years, with students typically starting in February.

We look for Graduates who are passionate, motivated and adaptable with a keen interest in learning new skills and stepping out of their comfort zones. Our mines are located in the Narrabri and Gunnedah regions of North West NSW, and our graduates often rotate between different mine sites, depending on business needs and current projects. It is essential you are prepared to relocate.

Applications typically open in April, and will be available here. The process includes interviews, psychometric testing and a medical.

We encourage you to visit us and speak to a recent Whitehaven graduate at a Career Fair. You can find out where we’ll be by checking our LinkedIn page.

We only accept people who are Australian Citizens or hold Permanent Residency, and have tertiary qualifications recognised in Australia. We do not have a cut off period for when your degree was completed.

Through our cadetship program, four Year 12 students from the Narrabri/Gunnedah region can undertake work experience and receive financial support throughout the duration of their University studies.

Applicants should have aspirations to pursue an Undergraduate Degree in either Mining Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, Geology, or Environmental Science.

Upon successful completion of their studies, cadets join Whitehaven Coal as graduate employees within their respective discipline for a period of two years.

Applications open in June and will be available here.

Whitehaven Coal offers up to 15 Vacation Students the opportunity to join our team in a paid role for up to 12 weeks during summer holidays, located at our mine sites and also our Gunnedah office.

Applicants should be pursuing a degree in Mining Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, Mechatronics, Geology, Environmental Science, Workplace Health & Safety or Surveying. We accept applications from students within all year levels at University including those completing post-graduate degrees.

Applications open in June and will be available here.

Graduate Story

Meet Gabby

Gabby is a Graduate Mechanical Engineer.

Find out about her typical day, what she’s found surprising and what she likes best about being a grad at Whitehaven.

Tell us a bit about yourself: I grew up in Narrabri then went to boarding school and uni in Queensland. I’m a second year graduate at Narrabri underground and I’ve recently been stepping up into the conveyor engineer role. While at school I saw local people starting to get involved in mining and it sparked my interest as Whitehaven became a bigger presence in the Narrabri community. At uni, I had a cadetship with Whitehaven that allowed me to work onsite during holidays and gain experience with every department at Narrabri, giving me a head start in the graduate program.

Why did you choose Whitehaven? I joined Whitehaven as a cadet in my first year of uni at the University of Queensland. I was already accepted into uni for engineering and saw the cadetship as a great way to get a head start in my career and move into a local professional role.

Describe a typical day: Over the last year, I’ve worked in the surface department, the engineering team in the CHPP, on crew in an operational role and with the conveyor team. A typical day consists of completing maintenance tasks and planning, interaction with trades, reviewing and maintaining standards of equipment, and mostly, people management.

What’s been the biggest surprise? I was concerned about being in a male dominated field and that I wouldn’t be taken seriously as a professional as a female engineer. Although there are always challenges, the team at Whitehaven has always been supportive of my ambitions and decisions.

What do you like best about Whitehaven? The opportunities for career development; I’ve been the project manager for a multi-million dollar project; had practical underground maintenance experience; and even driven a dozer. I’ve also participated in the WIMnet Mentoring program and the Engineers Australia Graduate Program.

How have you found the transition to full-time work? I’ve enjoyed the transition. My favourite part is having a weekend every week without feeling guilty about not doing assignments or studying.

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Graduate Story

Meet Oliver

Oliver joined Whitehaven as a Graduate Mechanical Engineer after completing his degree at the University of Newcastle.

Find out about his experience as a Whitehaven grad.

Tell us a bit about yourself: I’m from the Central Coast of NSW. I moved to Gunnedah for the job and really enjoy the lifestyle; it’s all about getting involved in the community through sport or other avenues. Working in trade-based roles alongside my university studies helped apply what I learned, and I couldn’t wait to start learning on the job. I didn’t always have an interest in mining, but I studied some mining-related courses at university and I’m now in the first year of the graduate program at the Narrabri underground mine.

Why did you choose Whitehaven? The breadth of experience and the fact that you are not pigeon-holed into a single role; there is scope to pursue avenues that interest you and sink your teeth into complex and rewarding engineering problems. You have a purpose within the mine and that drives your progress while you learn valuable engineering skills beyond what you learned at university.

Describe a typical day: I’m on a rotation through Surface Engineering Operations. Day to day I deal with maintenance tasks, consulting with and learning from trades to understand issues and work towards a solution or assisting with the maintenance task itself. There are also long term projects that require you to be looking forward and regularly planning and tracking goals.

What’s been the biggest surprise? The ability to get involved and get your hands dirty, learning the job and being able to go away and actively apply what you’re learning. There is also a lot of support to go and get extra tickets and qualifications, things that broaden your ability and versatility within the mine.

What do you like best about Whitehaven? It’s a great culture to work in. Everybody is approachable and prepared to help.

How have you found the transition to full-time work? The change to working day-to-day on projects where what you learn is immediately applicable is rewarding and an important part of stepping into an engineering role and developing your skillset.

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