TURN OF EVENTS: Michael Turnbull in Gladstone at the time of his apprenticeship.
TURN OF EVENTS: Michael Turnbull in Gladstone at the time of his apprenticeship. Brenda Strong

Man started apprenticeship in his sixties

WITH Gladstone Area Group Apprentices Ltd's 30th birthday last week, an array of their best apprentices have come out of the woodwork to share their experiences.

They included the company's oldest apprentice, Michael Turnbull.

Mr Turnbull has let life take him in all directions after spending most of his life in rural areas as a seismologist.

The jack of all trades said he didn't like retirement so, at the age of 62, he began casual lecturing in Bundaberg in 2006  and researching in earthquake engineering.

In July 2007 Mr Turnbull said he was appointed as research assistant at the research centre for Process Engineering and Light Metals at the Gladstone campus of Central Queensland University.

In July 2008 he was appointed as associate lecturer at the CQU Gladstone campus, teaching first and second-year engineering students basic engineering skills and the fundamentals of project management.

In March 2009 he started up a small mowing business, Four Seasons Mowing and Home Help. But he needed an income.

"So in February 2011, I took up a position with the Gladstone Area Group Apprentices Limited as an apprentice electrical fitter/mechanic," he said.

"I moved a caravan to Gladstone and lived there during the week days.

"I would travel home on the weekends or Pam, my wife, would sometimes come up to Gladstone and stay for a week or two."

While Mr Turnbull said it was tough living off the $14 an hour wage, he would jump at the chance to do the GAGAL program again.

"I realised you're never too old for learning," he said.