Mining industry needs greater public awareness to address skills problems

THE Australian mining industry needs to overcome the lack of interest by young people in pursuing careers in mining if it is to avert a serious skills shortage, Minerals Council of Australia Workforce...

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Mining industry needs greater public awareness to address skills problems Mining industry needs greater public awareness to address skills problems Mining industry needs greater public awareness to address skills problems Mining industry needs greater public awareness to address skills problems Mining industry needs greater public awareness to address skills problems

University of Queensland mining students at the Hail Creek mine.

He said the industry had made an investment in education and sought to address mental health issues in the industry, however, barriers remained to an acceptance of mining by people outside of the industry.
 
"The mining industry offers innovation, high wages, flexibility and diversity," Lind said.
 
"Young people are not turning away from mining because it is considered a poor environmental steward according to a survey about to released.
 
"The issue is they don't have enough information."  
 
The MCA has invested $50 million in tertiary education programs as part of its outreach to the younger generation.
 
The industry may still be seen as too "blokey" for many young graduates.  
 
The level of female participation in the Australian mining industry is between 12% and 18% and its indigenous employment levels 6%.
 
The MCA has put out a blueprint for dealing with mental health in the industry which is believed to affect 8,000 to 10,000 mining employees. There is an estimated $320 million and $450 million in lost production each year in mining because of mental health issues.
 
Western Australian School of Mines director Professor Sam Spearing said enrolment in mining engineering degrees had plunged 80% over the past four years. 
 
He said there was a widespread mis-perception that the mining industry did not offer secure employment because of cycles.
 
"Mining engineering jobs have only dropped by 10% over the four years," Spearing said. 
He said the mining universities were becoming more nimble in offering qualifications to professionals from outside the industry in order to retain skills.
 
 
 

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