HIGH school students will soon have the option of studying geology in senior years, with the launch of a new program targeting qualifications to support the resource industry.

Partnering with oil and gas company Beach Energy, the South Australian Government will fund the establishment of GeoFutures, a geology program open to year 11 and 12 students across all state schools.

“GeoFutures will complement other programs that are already underway, such as the Mining and Engineering Centre at TAFE Regency,” mineral resource and energy minister Tom Koutsantonis said.

“It will provide additional opportunities for students seeking qualifications to pursue a career in the energy, mining and exploration industries.”

With the help of program administrator Thebarton Senior College, Beach Energy staff will assist in curriculum development and teach some classes.

“Beach’s operations have grown considerably in the past few years, and with this growth comes the need to recruit more scientists, especially geologists, to work in the company,” chief operating officer Neil Gibbins said.

“It is important that we encourage young people into careers where they will be able to find jobs in the long term.”

According to Thebarton Senior College, 27 year 11 students have already enrolled to study geology under the GeoFutures program.