Pushing boundaries in a Fonterra apprenticeship


Dana is an apprentice Service Technician at our Darfield Service Centre, which means she gets stuck in with the heavy stuff as she works her way to becoming a heavy truck mechanic.

It’s Dana’s job to help keep our milk tanker fleet up to scratch – including servicing, diagnostics and making sure the tankers are safe for the job.

She started in at our Darfield site in February last year and is the only female Service Technician at Fonterra, and already she’s setting an example for other women.

Dana with her co-worker Jared France, in the Good Together Tanker

“Dana has been a fantastic addition to the team here at Darfield fleet services. She has a great attitude towards all aspects of her apprenticeship, along with great focus and determination. I’m looking forward to watching Dana progress in her career”, says her manager, Michael Vaughan.

Dana has always grown up around cars, it all started with her holding the spanner for her dad and her passion grew from there.

“My first job was at a parts store and then that sort of ignited it even further. Once I started my pre-trade, I realised that cars are a bit small to work on… So, the next option was trucks. I was graduating my pre-trade when they sent around the email for Fonterra, and now I’m here,” Dana says.

Take the leap, it's worth it. It’s worked out pretty well so far.

DANA, Service Technician apprentice

She’s never let working in such a male-dominated space bother her, “I'm just here to get up and do my job and do something that I want to do with life.” In fact, her favourite thing about her job is all the boys at the workshop. “They make it fun to come to work, they're good at teaching… it's like a mini family and we always laugh and have a good yarn. I love it there, it definitely makes for a good day.” She credits the team at the Darfield service centre for always making her feel supported.

“We just cover each other's backs and make sure we're all doing okay. They check up on you and make sure that you're on the right track. It's a helpful team and couldn't really ask for much more”, she says.

Dana had the opportunity to jump on board and co-pilot when the Good Together tanker travelled down to Ashburton earlier this month. “It’s great to have the opportunity do my job, but also to get out of the workshop to meet people and to see all the little wheels that work together to make Fonterra run”.

For anyone wanting to follow in her footsteps, Dana has a small piece of advice, “take the leap, it's worth it. It’s worked out pretty well so far.”

Dana’s small in stature, but big on work ethic and enthusiasm

Want to become an apprentice at Fonterra?

We’ve now opened recruitment for 23 apprenticeship positions with a start date in January 2022. Positions are based from Northland to Southland, providing quality employment and training in the regions.

If you, or someone you know, is interested in an apprenticeship, follow us on Facebook or Instagram (Fonterra Early Careers) for details on how to apply. Or click on the link below: