The program safely introduces workers to the underground mining industry through a staged introduction to the underground environment with a range of time and skills-based objectives over 12-18 months.
During this time personnel are able to obtain the necessary tickets required to operate bolters and underground diesel equipment, including personnel transport and loaders.
Acknowledging the shortage of available personnel to meet growing demand in mining, Minova has taken a proactive approach to ensure the high calibre of its personnel continues into the future, it says.
“One of the keys to success for any organisation is a healthy level of good quality personnel both in existing and developing roles,” the company said.
In 2010 Minova joined parent company Orica’s global graduate program.
This three-year rotation program has run within Orica for more than 20 years and includes more than 70 graduates globally each year covering multiple areas within the business.
The program aims to develop high potential graduates for a strong pipeline of future leaders.
Graduates attend annual development workshops, experience three diverse rotations and are mentored by Orica and Minova’s leaders.
Minova Australia general manager Greg Warren, a former graduate of the Orica program, is now a member of the Orica graduate advisory committee, which guides and champions the program.
Mining engineers Chris Hunter and Daniel Polack commenced at the beginning of 2011 as the first Minova employees in the program.
After spending his first year of rotation in hard rock with Orica Mining Services, Hunter is now in his second year and is based with Queensland operations in Mackay supporting Minova’s growing underground coal emergency response and ventilation business.
Polack joined Minova’s technology team based in New South Wales during his first year and may remain within Minova for the full three years of his rotation.
The graduate program is growing and two more graduates are expected to start by January 2012.
In 2010 Minova recruited the services of Dr Chris Lukey, who has a PhD in chemistry, to lead the resin products development program.
Lukey spent 12 years on the engineering faculty at the University of Wollongong, where he worked on collaborative projects with BlueScope Steel as well as being the lead researcher on the Tough Skin Project.
Lukey’s role with Minova ranges from improvements to existing products and processes right through to blue sky projects on new chemical technology.