(L to R) Hugh McSwain, North Slave Metis Alliance, Mine Training Society Board; Joe Hinzer, Co-Chair of the PDAC 2012 Convention Planning Committee
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Special Achievement Award
From time to time, the PDAC presents a Special Achievement Award that recognizes exceptional contributions to the mineral industry. This year, the association has chosen to honour the Mine Training Society (MTS) for providing Aboriginal people in northern Canada with the opportunity to develop usable job skills for the mining industry and for developing a pool of skilled workers for the industry.
MTS is a non-profit organization comprising Aboriginal, industry, and government partners. Its objectives are to: i) screen, select, train, and place northerners in all areas of mining; and ii) in cooperation with the NWT’s education system and communities, build a legacy of education and awareness about the employee and skill requirements of the mining industry.
MTS works with mining companies and industry service providers to bring training and jobs together, funding up to 50% of eligible costs for training programs. Priority for funding is given to training proposals that are skills based and lead directly to employment. The MTS is a pioneer in this area and serves as a model for the other training societies across the North.
Since 2004, the MTS and its partners have trained 854 individuals out of a total 1,095 applications, and 600 people have been employed in the mine and mine services sector. Courses offered include: general trades training; environmental monitoring; first aid first responder; driller helper; underground mining (heavy equipment operator, etc.); and mineral process operation.