07 december 2012

Eye on the Arctic – Training northerners for the mining economy


Photo: Sean Kilpatrick, The Canadian Press
Mine in Nunavut

Mining has becoming one of the most important industries in Canada’s remote northern territories. But often, the local population is unable to take advantage of some of the specialized jobs that become available.

But in Canada’s eastern Arctic territory of Nunavut, a new underground mining course will be offered  starting January 2013 to try to change this.

Michelle Buchan, manager of Inuit employment and training at the Kitikmeot Inuit Association in Cambridge Bay, Nunavut, says a course like this is important to the development of the region.
“We know what’s coming in our future, and the future is in mining and the mining industry in this region,” she said. “That’s doesn’t mean we don’t focus on any other kind of training, but we realise there’s a large gamut of jobs and careers available related to the mining and mineral industry.

“If we can get people trained so they aren’t walking in at entry level jobs and they have the capacity to take on some of the higher level jobs in the industry that’s only going to do positive things for the economy in our region.”

Eye on the Arctic’s Eilís Quinn spoke with Michelle Buchan to find out more about the course and her hopes for the new students.
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