DUNCAN BURCK

SISP Industry Liaison Officer

Duncan is an innovative, result-driven and experienced business manager who consults and manages projects for business, community organisations, government agencies and corporates in the areas of economic, workforce and business development.

He has volunteered for and been Program Director as well as Chair of the Rotary youth development program RYPeN (Rotary Youth Program of Enrichment). This fantastic learning experience, for people aged 14-17, introduces ideas and experiences to develop new skills and assist them transition from teens to young, confident and contributing adults.

For the NSW Business Chamber, between 2012 – 2017, Duncan united Local Chambers of Commerce and the business community in the Hunter to collaborate and activate projects for the betterment of the local and regional communities, including Beat Cancer @ Work and Hunter Young Business Mind Awards.

Duncan has influenced many young people to better themselves, particularly in STEM, by sponsoring their participation in regional, national and international programs such as the National Youth Science Forum and the Rotary International Young People’s Summit.

Duncan is very excited to be part of the RDA Hunter SISP team, working with the region’s key industry players in mining and environmental sciences to create fun, inspiring learning experiences which get our future workforce excited about the prospect of studying subjects in STEM.

KATHY COX

STEM Workforce Consultant

Kathy joined RDA Hunter in 2018 as a STEM Workforce Consultant liaising with industry and education sectors to create learning opportunities and employment pathways through STEM focussed program delivery.

Prior to this, Kathy was Operations Manager in the Faculty of Industry and Natural Resources at Hunter TAFE. She led and supported multiple head teachers of vocational education training, through critical business activities relating to all aspects of the learner life cycle. This included ensuring program sustainability and quality, promoting consistency in process and procedure as well as developing strategies to streamline teacher administration.

Kathy has two active young grandchildren she loves spending time with, and is interested in music, movies and travel.

KATE O’MARA

Special Projects

Kate has a particular interest in identifying, building on and raising awareness of the Hunter’s competitive advantages. She is currently working in a freelance capacity with RDA Hunter and its STEM Workforce Initiative to conceptualise, direct and implement ‘special’ regional development and industry-skilling projects such as the 2019 STEM Workforce Conference. She is also working on the organisation’s strategic communications activities.

As RDA Hunter’s former Director of Projects & Communications, Kate developed and delivered economic development, industry growth, innovation, investment, regional marketing, workforce development and corporate communications initiatives that contributed to the growth of RDA Hunter and improved the national and international position of both the organisation and the Hunter region. These initiatives included Smart Specialisation Strategy for the Hunter Region; Hunter Innovation Festivals and Scorecards; Study Hunter and Smart Happens Here.

Prior to joining RDA Hunter, Kate was employed by NSW’s economic development board, Hunter Economic Development Corporation. In this role she implemented trade and investment activities as part of the $1 million government funded strategy to diversify the Hunter region’s economy and industrial base in the lead up to and following the cessation of steelmaking in the Region in 1999.

PETER WALL

STEM Consultant

Peter has been working in a STEM consultancy role with RDA Hunter since 2012. Prior to freelance consultancy work, Peter has worked as an industrial research scientist for BHP, as a fulltime Senior High School teacher of Industrial Technologies, Physics and Software design and earlier as a Physics tutor and laboratory technician at the University of NSW.

Peter has run a variety of student and teacher workshops for the ME Program utilising industrial control equipment, robotics, electronics and computer programming. He has also been involved in the data analysis and reporting of various ME Program projects. Peter has built a variety of robotic and computer-controlled equipment for workshops and for class use including CNC machines, robotic arms, wind tunnels and various small maker projects for mechatronics and data logging applications.

Peter loves the way the new STEM and digital technologies curricula can engage students and provide exciting and relevant projects for teachers.