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Defence Work
Experience Program

Army Familiarisation Experience – Holsworthy Barracks – 9th to 13th March, 2020

On the week commencing the 9th March, 2020 5BDE at Holsworthy Barracks hosted 22 students for a week long experience designed to showcase the wide range of careers and opportunities that the Australian Army has to offer.

Students met their Defence Supervisor, Warrant Officer James Grey at 0700 sharp for their introduction, security and WH&S briefings. They then visited 5CSSB where they were able to view the different units that support, sustain and reinforce Army's operations. They had an interactive experience conducted by the medical staff and were able to view the different vehicles that 5CSSB has access to, including ambulances. After a mess lunch, they got the chance to visit the workshop and view a vehicle under repair. Before leaving for the day, they were put through their paces and checked their level of fitness against the standard Physical Fitness Assessment by the PTIs on base.

Wednesday saw participants get the opportunity to spend a night at Camp Cheney, and go through setting up an encampment including tents and cots, as well as preparing their evening meal from Ration Packs – the condensed milk is always a big hit, as it the chocolate! While at Camp Cheney, they undertook a variety of activities around camouflage, judging distance, how to set up a hoochie and some night vision activities. On Thursday morning, they commenced the pack down of their area, enjoyed a hotbox meal and then went on to 5ER. They enjoyed a variety of interactive activities that gave them some insight into construction and surveillance operations. After lunch, they were able to spend some time with the School of Policing, looking at the variety of taskings they undertake

Students were able to visit the Anzac Memorial and learned a lot about the history, traditions and culture that runs deep within the Australian Defence Force. Our participants visited the Hall of Memory learned about the battles of the Gallipoli campaign, the war on the Western Front, the Sinai-Palestine campaign and the battles that have been fought by the Royal Australian Navy. They learned the significance of Sacrifice, the sculpture designed by George Rayner Hoff, designed to represent the emotional impact on the families of those who passed away in World War I. They were very keen to find the soil of their own suburb and the suburbs of their families in the Hall of Service. After their visit to the Anzac Memorial, they visited 4/3 RNSWR and were able to get up close and personal with much of the equipment used by light infantry in undertaking their operations. They looked at what was involved in setting up a night shelter and got to view the command vehicles.

The final day saw students engage with the Overhead Water Obstacle course and get a presentation from Defence Force Recruiting, which allowed them to view the entry requirements for the different Services. They were able to ask lots of questions about the recruitment process and the recruitment experiences of the different staff that were present.

The participant feedback was overwhelmingly positive. Many students were convinced that a career in the Australian Defence Force was for them, and they learned about different career options that they were previously unaware were available. The Northern NSW Work Experience team received multiple emails from students, parents and careers advisers, expressing their thanks.

The Defence Work Experience Program would like to extend their thanks to LTCOL Tristan Leyden, WO James Grey, 5 Brigade staff, DFR and all of the staff at Holsworthy Barracks who provided such an excellent experience for our participants.