The Australian Defence Force (ADF) is on a mission to grow its workforce and inspire the next generation of recruits with immersive job experiences and school-based digital technology programs. The Royal Australian Navy (RAN) is travelling across Australia to support a number of interactive experiences for young Australians to learn more about Defence’s science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) roles, and explore job opportunities in the military.

Research has found that over a quarter of Gen Zs are willing to experience the career of a submariner; however, they also have the lowest understanding of what the job truly entails. To cater to this interest, the RAN is hosting the largest-ever National Submarine Tour in Rockingham, Western Australia, from 25 to 27 October. In addition to that, STEM robotics packs worth up to $2000 will be delivered to schools, and Virtual Reality information booths will be hosted across the country.

Leading Seaman Submariner Keigan said the RAN STEM programs were a great way to support and encourage recruitment, especially for in-demand STEM and submariner roles. “Young people have more opportunities than ever to get a behind-the-scenes look at our Naval training facilities, engage in Defence STEM workshops, and attend a range of information sessions,” he said. “The ADF has exciting roles on offer to suit people with broad-ranging backgrounds, skill levels, expertise and interests. If you enjoy science, technology, engineering and maths, there are a number of opportunities to work at the leading edge of technical innovation. The Navy programs hope to change perceptions and inspire the next generation to join the ADF and study for free, either on the job getting a trade or through a degree at the Australian Defence Force Academy.”

The ADF has successfully grown the National Submarine and Emerging Technicians Award Tours as key attraction tools in the recruitment of submariners, contributing to an increase in applications. Keigan also said the Royal Australian Navy STEM programs gave young people an authentic insight into life as a submariner. “I operate and maintain the sonar and combat systems on a submarine. It’s a big job balanced with a great salary and benefits, opportunities to travel the world and most of all, the privilege of helping Australians and people overseas. During the programs, participants see first-hand that there’s plenty of fun and comradery on board, along with delicious food prepared by our chefs and great technology to work with. We hope to provide a genuine experience about life as a submariner and a holistic view of life in the Navy.”

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