Shi Ping Sia
Who do you work for?
Rio Tinto Alcan Yarwun. We produce smelter grade alumina for the aluminium production industry.
What does your job involve?
Monitoring and troubleshooting the refinery process as well as completing projects in process improvement. In short, my job encompasses problem solving and optimisation.
Why did you choose to work in this sector?
I enjoy the challenges involved in my work, which allows me to utilise my knowledge from university to the best of my abilities.
What is the most rewarding part of your current job?
Satisfaction from when my efforts come to fruition, which in turn keeps things interesting and exciting.
What has been one of your recent achievements?
I was involved in an evaluation project that has since generated significant cost savings for the company.
What is the most challenging part of your current job?
Time management and efficient communication. Working in a fast-paced operating environment, everyone’s tasks can accumulate quickly. Hence it is crucial to manage time well and prioritise tasks. Efficient and effective communication plays an important role in completing tasks.
What do you hope to do in the future?
At the moment, I am building my technical portfolio so that in the future I can oversee and manage projects with a variety of challenges.
What are some of the other benefits of your job?
My job allows me to develop myself as a professional with the appropriate support. At the same time, I have the opportunity to meet individuals of diverse backgrounds thus developing my cultural awareness. Besides, Rio Tinto is an international mining corporation which offers great remuneration and employee benefits.
What training did you have for this job?
After secondary school
I completed the Western Australian Universities’ Foundation Program (WAUFP), which is a university entrance course for international students. Then, I completed my Bachelor’s Degree in Chemical and Process Engineering at the University of Western Australia. After that, it has mainly been on-the-job training.
What career advice would you give to school students interested in a similar career?
Always be curious, keep asking questions and maintain an open mind as you learn.
To find out more about how Rio Tinto supports classroom teaching and learning in maths, science and business studies for young people aged 12-16 visit SMART, our free international education portal. Using a combination of interactive whiteboard presentations, printable lesson plans, worksheets and case studies, students can explore how their academic studies relate to real-world operations in a major global business.