Mentor Group


CMRCI provides a mentoring service to students in years 7, 8 and 9 at the University of Canberra High School Kaleen, the location for our club room.  The Mentoring Program was initiated on 24 November 2011, nearly nine years ago, and it remains strong and enthusiastic.

Last year the group completed Iron Rock Pass, which went on to win an award at the Expo.  The layout was stored and a new project started.  This year’s project is a diorama spread over two modules, capable of matching with our existing fiddle yard to give the group flexibility of operations, and potentially, exhibitions.  The emphasis with this project is the use of micro-controllers (Arduinos) to control lighting, points, and other scenery items.  There will be a lit football stadium, an overhead roadway with operating cars, as well as the usual scenery modelling.  The students chose the name “Techtopia” to reflect the technical aspects of the construction. 

Unfortunately, the CoVid pandemic with its associated shutdown has caused a major delay in progress, with the Mentor Group having to cease activities for four months.  We are now back in operation, and good progress is once again being made on the module structure and track positioning.

With only one term to go this year, there is some doubt the project will be close to completion by the end of the school year.  But there will be plenty to do in 2021, and with good planning, the layout may be ready for the possibility of an Expo at the end of March.

A waterfall on Iron Rock Pass – Snowmelt is well under way at “Iron Rock Pass” and the bridges are out. A busy time lies ahead for the track and bridge crew!

The Updated Layout


The Aims of the Mentor Program

When the program was initiated in 2011 the aims behind it were to:

  • Provide students in the program with the opportunity to relate well to older people with real-life experience.
  • Build student self-confidence and self-reliance.
  • Develop student teamwork and team achievement in a structured program.
  • Develop skills in the use of tools and techniques that they may not otherwise experience, using model railways as a means of achieving this.
  • Introduce students to applications of computing and electronic technologies and to build both experience and confidence in their use.
  • Encourage, in those students interested, an involvement in model railways as a life-long hobby and recreation.
  • Provide an opportunity for the team to showcase and publicise their achievements at one or more Model Railway exhibitions or Expos during the time of their involvement in the program.

This page was last updated on 12 Oct 2020