Already, mining is embracing autonomous equipment and mining operations are utilizing integrated communications, mining big data and starting to demand that the miner has higher skills sets. Canada will need to equip the youth of the future with the right skills for this transitioning industry. Here are a few options to help prepare the youth for future careers in mining:
- Create more opportunities for Coop placements within the industry for students.
- Greater access to underground mines sites for educational field trips
- Establish equal standards of education more broadly across the country but with a specific focus on preparing non-traditional employees such as women and indigenous groups with the skills necessary to work in a highly technical resource extraction industry.
- Make automation/robotics a mandatory requirement at the high school level.
- Teach computer sciences/programming as early as elementary school.
- Integrate the mining process in all high schools’ curriculum (some currently do this in Northern Ontario)
- Support organizations that are promoting and advancing mining innovations and skills development.