Indigenous Australian Engineering Schools (IAES) is an Engineering Aid Australia (EAA) initiative, which provides Indigenous school students from around Australia with the opportunity to immerse themselves in engineering activities during the annual week-long Summer and Winter Schools in both Sydney and Perth. The primary objective of the IAES program is to increase Indigenous participation in engineering.

Giwangallani Mendez Williams, a proud Wiradjuri and Yorta Yorta girl from Wollongong, was one of 25 Indigenous students who attended the 2019 IAES Summer School in Sydney. Giwangallani describes her IAES experience as “… providing guidance for the next important chapter of my life. I had a wonderful week, learning, growing and connecting alongside my peers. I explored a range of engineering career paths and developed some new skills. It was great to connect and network with fellow students, the IAES alumni and all the engineers we met.”

Lindsay Dynan has been an IAES Sponsor since 2011.This sponsorship finances the travel, accommodation and participation costs of one student each year. In addition, LD staff participate in networking workshops with the students and provide valuable insights into the work of structural and civil engineers. This year’s networking session was attended by three of our staff members, Phil Marshall, Guy Douglas and Josh Knight, and included a very popular hands-on virtual reality experience.

Since its inception, over 700 Indigenous school students from all parts of Australia have attended IAES Summer Schools. Around 65% have completed tertiary training and 160 have become qualified practising engineers.

The IAES program, a vision of the late Jeff Dobell, has changed so many lives whilst addressing Indigenous disadvantage in Australia. IAES is a key project in LD’s Corporate Social Responsibility program, and we are very proud to be a part of this great organisation of volunteers, who have helped to address Indigenous disadvantage and make a substantial difference to so many people.