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Investing in the next generation to build skills for the future – Traineeships

Above Water Systems (AWS) is committed to developing talent to join our team of highly skilled and innovative engineers to ensure that our engineering community remains at the cutting edge of best practice. Our Technical and Weapons Traineeship gives trainees the opportunity to build smarter solutions across mechanical equipment repair and maintenance on a range of combat and weapons systems, engineering upgrades and design as well as support capability.

Mechanical Trainee, Technical and Weapons, Miles Rogge, tells us about his traineeship with AWS. 

Q. Why did you apply to Thales for a traineeship? 

Initially, I worked in an engineering field outside of Thales and wanted to study. When I applied for the traineeship, I had been working at Thales for almost three years. I started working at the Thales’ main ready use store and was studying my Engineering Diploma at night for a full year before the traineeship came up. I applied and was accepted. I finished my Advanced Diploma of Engineering in just two years. I had always wanted to study engineering and the traineeship was an amazing opportunity to continue what I had started in my own time. Since finishing my Advance Diploma last year, I have been studying a CERT IV in Training and Assessment to become a qualified instructor and assessor, which should be finished this year. Thales has enabled me to study some interesting fields beyond what I could have done on my own.

Q. Describe your journey with AWS so far.

I am currently working on the DDG program but have also worked on the ANZAC Class and LHDs.  The complexity and diversity of the DDG program has allowed me to work on all sorts of equipment, from dry air systems and high-power cooling units for the combat systems to propulsion systems and habitation equipment. Last year, I had the opportunity to assist in installing a new sonar array and sonar dome on an ANZAC Class which was an amazing experience.

Q. What have you learnt/experienced?

AWS has helped me with my goal of studying mechanical engineering, but it also found me studying something I didn’t realise I would enjoy so much - instructing and assessing. The management team I currently work for are exceptionally supportive and helpful. I’ve been learning everything from how the ships systems work, to the processes and procedures within Thales.

Q. Describe the culture, support and team. 

The management team I work with are extremely supportive and always there to answer questions when needed. I currently work directly for Phil Ghaza. His knowledge and understanding of the ships’ systems and the processes are next to none, and he’s always available with helpful advice and information. John Dyson, our manager is a great leader too and very approachable. 

Q. What is your end goal? 

I have almost finished my second year as a trainee and aim to finish the traineeship when the team feels I’m ready. In the interim, I am happy learning and growing within the team. I have also been studying other subjects to further myself, whilst getting as much on-the-job training as possible. 

Q. Tips for anyone thinking of doing a traineeship.

Just go for it, you are never too old! I was worried that being 28 years old and applying for a job usually reserved for younger people would be a disadvantage. This was far from the truth. Yes, I am an older trainee but it’s never too late to start. Thales are supportive and foster a great working atmosphere. You’ll never regret taking an apprenticeship or traineeship with Thales.

For information on all Thales roles go to or contact our team at

Greg Gocher, Regional Production Manager, Above Water Systems
Jasmin Hilleard, Director Communications
+61 2 8037 6034 / +61 420 903 636