Oil and Gas Industry Education in Canada

Oil and Gas Industry EducationOil and Gas Industry Education in Canada

The Canadian skills gap is a big issue, but oil and gas workers and students don’t need to be afraid of it thanks to a wealth of training programs available countrywide.

We all know that energy is big business in Canada. In fact, one third of Canadians rated the oil and gas industry as one of the top three industries for job opportunities next year, according to the Randstad Canada Labour Trends Study 2014.

Of those polled, 9 in 10 thought that the skills gap would be a serious issue in 2014. What’s more, in provinces like Alberta and Saskatchewan, where oil and gas projects are booming, the lack of skilled trade workers was seen as the biggest issue facing the industry in 2014.

Young workers (under 34) in particular expect employers to provide financial incentives for their work and training, while mature workers (over 55) are more likely to believe that career incentives should start in schools.

Another debated question is whose responsibility it is for the training required to close the gap, with one in three workers believing that governments should do more to train under and unemployed workers. A full 40% of workers believe companies should invest more in skills training.

This lack of confidence hurts both employers who need great workers and the potential employees alike. Luckily, workers can take control of their futures in several ways.

Getting your Start in Oil and Gas

Workers passionate about theory should lean towards traditional engineering programs at universities, which set them up for professional engineering licenses.

But if you just want a quick and hands-on approach to learning, most community college programs offer a fast way to get your hands dirty. It’s worth checking out your program’s transferability to four-year degrees, too, in case you decide you want to go the traditional route.

Several Canadian schools offer programs designed specifically to get you into petroleum engineering and technology: Cape Breton University , the University of Calgary, the University of Alberta, and the University of Saskatchewan all offer excellent engineering programs geared to the petroleum industry.

Getting Ahead

For many workers, understanding how to get into the oil and gas industry is enough of a challenge. Then there’s the question of ongoing skill renewal in order to stay on top of industry standards and advance professionally.

Professional certifications can help you stand out from the crowd professionally and help you move into management roles more quickly than your less-prepared counterparts. Certification programs require professional experience, and often other supporting information. Keep a portfolio, and keep your eyes open for new opportunities.

Certification can make you an attractive employment option, and help you understand complex issues prior to encountering them in the field. Whether your interest lies in helping communities understand and work with oil and gas projects through stakeholder relations, keeping worksite standards up as a Safety Professional or establishing contracts as a landman, there is a professional option out there for you.

Nor does education have to stop at the professional and undergraduate level. Plenty of universities offer Masters of Science programs in petroleum or environmental engineering. From there, a doctorate certainly isn’t out of the question for an academic oil and gas worker.

Canadian Petroleum Engineering Schools

canadian petroleum engineering schoolsCanadian Petroleum Engineering Schools: Reputable Petroleum Engineering Schools in Canada to Consider

Planning to launch your career in oil and gas? The first step to becoming a desirable employee is getting a great education under your belt, which will prepare you for the challenges of working in the oilfield. The industry is in particular need of engineers from all disciplines, especially petroleum engineers. In fact, the Petroleum Human Resources Council of Canada estimates the oil and gas industry will need roughly another 1,100 petroleum engineers by 2015.

One incentive for pursuing this career path is the high wages petroleum engineers earn. The average income is $141,000 Canadian, with a top end around $282,000. In fact, petroleum engineering is considered the highest paying engineering jobs in the world according to mycanadianuniversity.com.

To provide background on what petroleum engineers do, they’re the people on the oil and gas team who assess costs and viability of drilling projects, and design the methods for extracting oil. The education required for this career is intensive, and not all schools offer petroleum engineering programs. Instead, many working petroleum engineers have backgrounds in chemical or mechanical engineering. That means that you can put yourself ahead of the pack by getting the best specialized education.

University of Alberta

This university in the heart of the Canadian prairies offers a BSc in petroleum engineering, and it is the only school in Canada with international accreditation and recognition. It also offers an Msc, MEng, and PhD in petroleum engineering, giving students access to long-term education in its well-funded facilities.

Memorial University

The Memorial MSc is in Oil and Gas Engineering, meaning it covers both oil and natural gas engineering. There’s also an opportunity to work in an internship as part of the program. The school also offers programs in Process Engineering — which focuses on modifying materials like oil for use in products — and Environmental Systems Engineering and Management — which covers remediation, environmental law, and arctic offshore drilling.

Dalhousie University

There are two options here: A MEng in Petroleum engineering, or an MEng or PhD in Mineral Resource Engineering with a focus on petroleum. Both programs offer research opportunities for students, with the rare opportunity to study cutting-edge challenges like offshore drilling, ocean fluids, and reservoir engineering.

University of Regina

The University of Regina’s program is connected to the Petroleum Technology Research Centre, a facility used for research into all areas of petroleum production, from oil recovery to carbon storage. Its mandate is to improve petroleum recovery rates while reducing the environmental footprint of the industry. The connection gives BSc, MEng, MSc and PhD students a high level of hands-on training.

University of Calgary

The BSc in Oil and Gas Engineering at the University of Calgary covers geological principles, thermodynamics, and mass conservation alongside practical courses on oil field safety, well testing, and drilling. Set in the heartland of oil production, the potential professional links here are excellent.

Northern College of the Atlantic

Northern College of the Atlantic offers a three-year program, with a minimum of 12 weeks work experience. This combination builds an excellent base of technical knowledge and builds it up with a strong foundation in real-world lessons.

Take This Job & Love It! Retaining Oil and Gas Millennials

retaining oil and gas millennials

Take This Job & Love It! Retaining Oil and Gas Millennials

There is no doubt about it – in order for the oil and gas industry to meet the growing demand for energy, they need to formulate effective strategies to attract and engage the industry’s newest resource: Generation Y or Millennials (born between 1980 to early 2000). You may well ask why.  If you’ve been working in upstream oil and gas for over 20 years, chances are you will be looking to retire in the not-too-distant future. This is exactly what corporate leaders in the oil and gas sector have been concerned about for the past decade or so – the pool of talent with all the requisite skills is diminishing, due in most cases to natural attrition and in some cases from incentives to jump ship to other employers.

Although many jobs in the oil and gas sector are highly technical and require skills and experience that are unable to be filled by ordinary means, the industry is looking to replenish their dwindling talent pool by attracting millennials.  Oil and gas employees are responsible for making big decisions that have huge financial consequences — one wrong decision might cost a company millions in a single day. For this reason, upstream oil and gas must ensure that the millennials who are potential employees are engaged, sufficiently trained and able to make autonomous decisions.

How did we get here?    

The current lack of sufficient employees in the oil and gas sector wasn’t helped by the industry’s hibernation for most of the 1980s and 1990s. During those two decades hiring in the industry ground to a halt, and as a natural result universities and colleges dropped petroleum programs from their calendars. Fast-forward 30 years and the demand for energy is at an all-time high.  Universities and colleges have appropriately shifted gears and are producing new graduates that are recruited on-campus.  Oil and gas industry CEOs are acutely aware of the evaporating pool of talent with specialized skills that keep their respective organizations competitive.  There’s only one problem – new hires lack the experience that will ensure they make sound decisions. Employers are also concerned that once a new employee has gained adequate experience they may be persuaded to take a job offer from one of their competitors.

Retention Strategies

As with most recruitment campaigns, a good strategy begins with capturing the hearts and minds of the people you wish to attract.  How is this done with millennials? For one thing, employers need a change of organizational mindset to embrace the notion that millennials are looking to complement their lifestyle with their job instead of the other way around.  For example, if you’re looking to populate work camps for an extended period, the millennials’ quality of life is paramount.

Work/Life Integration

What do millennials want?  In studies such as the PwC 14th Annual CEO Survey, the findings show that millennials value work/life integration more than the conventional balancing act of job and the rest of your time. This is what a laundry list of millennial requirements might look like:

  • Premium accommodations at Work Camp sites instead of requiring workers to find local hotels, motels and trailer parks;
  • Emphasis on healthy eating by providing in-house nutrition specialists and premium dining facilities;
  • Adequate sleep by bringing in experts to facilitate a good night’s sleep for the high-risk jobs of rig workers;
  • Exercise facilities and Wi-Fi hotspots;
  • Encouraging open social networks without the need to monitor usage;
  • Mentorship programs that bring millennials and leaders together.

Next Steps

All of these steps sound expensive to implement, but when you consider that the cost of replacing an experienced professional or technical resource is approximately one-and-one-half times their annual salary, the issue takes on a much clearer perspective.  Remember that the specific skills required in the oil and gas industry don’t allow for seamless transferring-in from other industry sectors, no matter how similar.

In short, with the impending loss of institutional knowledge there is an urgent need for companies in the upstream oil and gas industry to update their approach to recruiting, developing, deploying and connecting their people.

Strategies to Address the Energy Industry Talent Gap

energy industry talent gapStrategies to Address the Energy Industry Talent Gap

Oil and gas companies are facing an industry-wide skills gap across various occupations, and this has the energy sector scrambling to implement long-term solutions to widen their available talent pools and better adapt the existing workforce for an ever-expanding industry.

With more than 50% of the current workforce, mainly consisting of technical specialists and senior managers, being eligible for retirement in 2015, the oil and gas industry is facing a series of complications. These include a lack of adequately skilled employees capable of replacing said retirees, competition over a restricted talent pool and a lack of prospective university students interested in petroleum engineering

The ‘Brain Drain’ – a term referring to the loss of skilled and educated individuals to other locations, motivated by higher pay or preferable conditions – is real and is causing a complex, multi-faceted, and ever-looming problem. Overall, a global shortage of technical talent has been forecasted in the oil and gas industry, with only Europe and Australia seeing a surplus.

Before the crisis can be averted it’s necessary to know where the industry stands. Only after such analysis can the issues begin to be addressed directly and the long-term plans and goals be implemented in an effort to reverse the Brain Drain into a Brain Gain.

Taking a Look at the Problem

A 2014 survey conducted by KPMG in collaboration with Rigzone uncovered largely overlooked issues contributing to the talent shortage. The survey analysis consisted of over 2,000 energy sector professionals in a broad cross-section of the industry.
Through its findings, four problem areas were discovered:
1. connection and communication,
2. age and generational gaps,
3. application of technology,
4. and resource development collaboration.

The report outlines the general approach to each of these problems and potential ways of addressing them.

Proposing Solutions

With all the complexities in mind, the problem simply reduces to a need to increase human capital in the industry in a comprehensive and cooperative way.

In his address to the 2013 Petronas International Human Capital Summit, Jay Doherty, partner and co-founder of Mercer Workforce Sciences Institute, highlighted key issues regarding the deficit in human capital and provided the following insight into the solution pathways provided by workforce planning.

Expanding on Connections and Improving Communication

The strongest need that organizations are currently facing is ensuring that their workforce is capable of performing expected job functions. This is pressuring companies to devote resources into recruitment, resource development, and improving how their existing workforce is utilized.

The key to meeting this need is to broaden how connections and communications are made. Internal communication needs to be formalized in order to promote collaboration in corporate culture. Over the last seven years, oil and gas firms have seen a 12% drop in talent building, as they rely more and more on buying out existing employees from other firms, or other industries. It is vital that companies focus on building talent from within, as opposed to perpetually looking outwards.

External hiring from universities remains stagnant at roughly 10%, while hiring employees from competitors continues to grow, and represents just over 45% of new hires. University recruiting can be bolstered by closer participation with institutions by helping design curriculums that meet the needs of the industry in order to attract and produce more graduates in a given specialty. The use of recruitment specialists can help screen and integrate graduates into corporate culture. Training and development must be focused on internally to develop a talented pool of professionals for internal recruitment and talent retention.

Another alternative to tackling this issue is it to integrate technology by means of Internet job boards and social media tools. Job boards are used to fill just under 19% of open positions in the industry, and can be further utilized and expanded on to attract new graduates. Additionally, social media can widen the pool of potential applicants. The various mediums allow employers to promote discussion of company events, industry achievements and plans for future developments. This can be a powerful tool for connecting to a large audience who may recall a company when considering choices for future employment.

Bridging the Age Gap Will in Effect Bridge the Talent Gap

The generational gaps between each segment of the workforce are largely overlooked. These gaps are between the Pre and Post-Baby Boomer era, as well Generations X and Y. The gaps are evident in the differences in approaches to learning, addressing authority, adoption of new technologies, and the kind of experience that only comes with time – creating a standard process to bridge these gaps is no easy task.

Companies must find a way to ensure that the older and retiring workforce passes on its knowledge to the younger workforce in order to utilize years of knowledge with new technologies and a modern mindset. Viable options include implementing knowledge-sharing and training programs that are able to filter out experience-based knowledge versus opinions.

Implementing New Technology for the New Workforce

Embracing technology into the recruitment process is paramount. Collection of “Big Data” with the use of business intelligence software will help forecast future workforce needs, as well as being able to compare labour force demand, and how it ties into matching and comparing occupational labour market data by cross-referencing skills and experience requirements. Such tools can be used to map out and plan career paths, as well as help in restructuring internal labour market analysis.

Ditching Recruitment Poaching for Cross-Industry Collaboration

In its study, KPMG found that the industry’s top risk assessments were difficulty in recruiting from the competition, as well as losing existing talent to its competitors (risk levels were assessed at about 3.4 and 3.7, out of 5, respectively).

Rather than focusing on competitive recruitment strategies, companies can differentiate themselves in how they operate. Companies must collaborate on how to identify and take advantage of labour capital with geographical and skill set considerations in mind. In essence, the industry needs to make the initiative in developing potential resources to widen the overall talent pool and serve the entire energy sector as a whole, in other words: mutually-assured prosperity.

These various solutions to the four main problems in the energy industry talent gap are the stepping stones to a brighter future. By adapting their practices and procedures to include and implement these ideas, companies put themselves in a position to take the lead in the industry and maintain a competitive edge. Both the labour market and the energy industry must begin addressing and overcoming this challenge before it’s too late.

Oil and Gas Talent Shortage: New Talent Drying Up

New Talent is Drying Up for the Oil and Gas Industry

Accordoil and gas talent shortageing to the International Energy Outlook released by the US Energy Information Administration, the global demand for energy could grow by as much as 56% before the year 2040. The bulk of that increase is coming from developing nations who are eager to join the world economy.

In order to keep up with demands, the oil and gas industry will take the lead by not only stepping up production, but by also expanding its overall workforce. However, a challenge is posed by the lack of skilled workers available to meet production needs. As the current workforce reaches retirement age, companies are scrambling to put aggressive recruitment programs into place due to an oil and gas talent shortage.

One of the first areas in the oil and gas industry that needs an influx of workers is on the deepwater rigs. The call has gone out for a new army of drilling, completion and intervention risers. Beyond the ocean rigs, the extraction of liquefied natural gas and shale gas also requires workers who are ready to jump on the line. Without a properly trained workforce, some of the new exploration and production projects could get stalled. If that happens, supply lines could be impacted, which in turn can drive up costs. That’s not something the consumer wants to face.

To address the growing workforce gap, leaders in the oil and gas industry are setting up training programs at community colleges, vocational schools and universities around the world. A primary goal is to attract the next generation of workers as they graduate from high school. The challenge is finding ways of making this type of work appealing to these young grads. Ironically, if
those same grads pursue an education in business or the legal profession, they may have a hard time finding gainful employment upon graduation. That doesn’t seem to be the case in the oil and gas industry. In other words, there will likely be jobs waiting for the new engineers, but the same may not be true for a young lawyer or business manager. In fact, many oil and gas companies are recruiting engineers from shipbuilding and infrastructure projects.

Beyond stepping up efforts to attract recent high school grads and other young students, industry human resource reps are turning to the military as a place to find qualified workers. Ex-service personal already have an appealing array of skill sets in leadership and project management. These are the qualities that would make them solid candidates for many levels of oil and gas industry work.

Additionally, retention programs across the industry are being expanded. This will help companies hang onto the workers they already have. These retention programs include expanded benefits, bonuses and other incentives. Fortunately, this is one segment of the business world where funding financial incentives won’t prove to be a burden on the company’s bottom line.

Companies also need to change their hiring practices. It may no longer be viable to strictly hire locally, especially when you consider how one company’s interests can span across several countries. The idea is to find the best people for the job and provide them with the freedom and resources to relocate. Bottom line: for the oil and gas industry to thrive, they have to find the best workers wherever they can.


Social Media for Mining: The Benefits

social media for miningThe Benefits of Social Media for the Mining Industry

With over 1 billion Facebook users, it is clear that this is the place where people are hanging out online. Along with the millions of location updates, baby pictures and recipes, Facebook is proving to be a viable marketing tool for many businesses; including the mining industry. Utilizing social media for mining companies is a fast growing need for those wanting to stay in the public eye. Keep in mind that when it comes to social media networking, Facebook isn’t the only major player. There are many social media platforms that can prove to be helpful for mining marketing. Here’s how these websites can be put to work for mining operations:

On Facebook

Every person, business, group, and even television show can have their own Facebook page. The status updates posted by the page’s administrator will be sent out to everyone who “likes” the page. The more followers, the greater your message’s reach will be. One of Facebook’s greatest attributes is that it is extremely user friendly. The ability to post photos, videos and documents is not only easy, but instantaneous. The Australian Institute of Mining and Mineralogy (AusIMM) has created their own Facebook group where they are actively sharing news and articles that would be of interest to their followers. They are also able to stimulate conversations about various mining industry concerns. Facebook can also be used by mining operations to create a platform where employees, working across various shifts, can stay connected and share information.

On LinkedIn

In the social media arena, LinkedIn has proven itself to be an effective networking site for business professionals. It is similar to Facebook in that you set up a profile and can add connections of friends and companies. However, there is less random posting as the information shared on LinkedIn is much more focused. The details of a LinkedIn profile act as an online resume. This enables LinkedIn users to network with companies who are hiring and grants the interested employer instant access to their applicable job history. Many recruiters are using LinkedIn to find new hires. Using this attribute of LinkedIn could help the mining industry find the next generation of engineers and geologists.

On Twitter

Like Facebook, Twitter is all about the “status update.” However, because the message is limited to 140 characters or less, it has to be direct and to the point. Just because the Tweet is limited doesn’t mean you can’t include links. Many businesses use Twitter to announce special promotions or company news. By including a link with a short description or catchy title, you engage your followers who can then open the link to view the complete article, case history, press release, etc.

On YouTube

YouTube can be used for more than just watching cat videos or pranks. Companies and individual users can set up their own YouTube channel and post educational videos such as safety videos, training videos or even company news. For many, being able to watch a video instead of reading a long article or safety manual will allow the information to be more easily understood and retained. Online videos are also easily accessible, even for remote mining operations. For some examples of how mining machine manufacturers are using YouTube, see how Joy Mining Machinery and Thiess Mining are utilizing this social media platform. If your company is using social media as part of company operations, you need to establish posting policies for your employees. They are free to post their personal news on their own pages, but if they are speaking for the company, they should have a unified voice. The mining industry should take advantage of the opportunities that social media provides. Due to the mining industry often having a negative public image, it is extremely important that mining companies be more proactive in communicating with key stakeholders such as environmentalists, investors and the government.

eLearning for Oil and Gas

elearning for mining

eLearning 101: Web-Based Training for Oil & Gas Workers

What could possibly motivate a person to take training on their computer instead of in a classroom?  Potential factors are simplicity, convenience and lower up-front costs. For an employer, comparative costs for online or web-based learning (eLearning) and instructor-led classroom learning is typically significant.

What’s My Motivation?

Previously, if an employee wanted to advance in their career they had to take evening courses at a nearby high school or university in subjects that their employer wanted them to take. For an oil rig employee, this would have meant taking a health and safety course in a trailer near the oil rig they were working at.  If courses were purely for self-interest, an employer would usually not reimburse the cost unless the worker could justify the expense.

Mutually Beneficial   

So how do employers and employees mutually benefit with eLearning? For one thing, online courses are cost-effective for an employer.  For example, 2,000 students can be trained in 7 hours (14,000 student-hours) using eLearning.  Compare that to 10 hours (20,000 student-hours) of instructor classroom training.  Right there, 6,000 student-hours have been saved. If you attach a conservative hourly rate of $30, there is a total savings of $180,000.00.  This amount doesn’t include savings in instructors, travel, training hardware and facilities.

The benefit to employees is saving personal time.  Online students don’t have to spend valuable time travelling to and from a classroom, eLearning is provided on demand. This results in employees feeling empowered because they have total control of their learning schedule, they can determine how much time they are able to devote to their course load and they can select an optimal finish date.

What is E-Learning Anyway?

Before e-Learning became popular, it was known by many names – Computer-Based Training (CBT), Web-Based Training (WBT), Electronic Performance Support Systems (EPSS), distance or online learning and online tutorials. Thankfully, this type of training has evolved dramatically over the years.  Standardization has been established and there is now a large measure of consistency in the use of authoring tools and delivery systems.

Learning Management Systems

While e-Learning has great value this can be lost if it is not accompanied by a robust and well thought-out Learning Management System (LMS).  An LMS sometimes includes Content Management functionality and is consequently known as an LCMS.  An LMS provides several functions that previously required coordination between various parties, these functions include: Registration, Grading, Reporting, Guidance (Pathfinding), Security, etc.

E-Learning Leaders in Oil & Gas

There are plenty of eLearning providers on the Internet but only a few stand out in the oil and gas sector.  PetroEd has moved to the front of the line for oil and gas.  Their training portal allows for streamlined access for registered users. From rig workers to administrative staff, every employee in the oil and gas industry can benefit from taking online courses and can add real value to their work profile while on the job. Workers can keep up-to-date with the latest technology and, if they desire, they can pursue a degree or diploma to further their career.  eLearning for Oil and Gas is evidently beneficial to both employees and employers.

The Future

Consider the potential benefits of learning via your smartphone or tablet. The possibilities that technology provides to learning are endless and the benefits are limitless.  To gain an understanding of the direction that learning is headed due to recent advancements observe the steps being taken by local universities and colleges. A common practice is the combination of eLearning with classroom delivery, called Blended Learning.  It represents the best of both worlds and helps make education even more accessible.

With so many eLearning opportunities and the multitude of benefits provided by this pursuit, it is an excellent option for many oil and gas employees hoping to advance their careers. Furthermore, it provides oil and gas companies the chance to invest in their existing human capital by offering high quality industry-specific education for a lower cost and with greater convenience to their employees.

Maritime Labour Crisis

maritime labour crisisMaritime Labour Crisis: Canada Marine Sector Facing Labour Shortage

Globally, there is a looming shortage of employees in the marine sector and Canada is not exempt. Canada alone requires around 10,000 new employees, which is just 2% of the global requirement within the next decade. Marine personnel are required to replace retiring captains, officers, marine port workers and engineers. The problem is that the number of students enrolling in marine courses are dropping.

This is a major concern, not only being experienced in Canada, but across the globe; as young professionals are opting for different occupations. One of the main reasons for not joining the marine profession is due to the long time out at sea.

Global trade is dependent on ships to transport bulk cargo over long distances. Therefore, the trillion-dollar shipping industry can’t come to a stop. Canadian shipping companies, government and all stakeholders have been working hard to encourage young professionals to take maritime courses and join the profession. In order to keep the industry moving, there are certain strategies that are being implemented.

Simplified and Easier Acceptance in to Marine Courses

To help encourage more candidates to join maritime courses, pre-requisites have been changed, as well as the requirements for graduation. With a large deficit of over 1,000 marine jobs needing to be filled each year and an insufficient average graduate rate of just over 200 mariners each year, serious steps must be taken. Since the majority of personnel required in the marine shipping industry are related to manual labour jobs, or deck-hands as they are better known, the passing marks for these candidates are being relaxed, allowing more deck-hands to pass.

Remove Limitations Linked to Continuing Education While Still Working

While working on marine vessels, most professionals will need to work up the ladder to achieve higher ranks. Most intend on being promoted, however, a major concern linked to marine courses was the limitation on continuing education, without needing to take a break from work. Even with distance learning, mariners do not have the time to study while at sea. To alleviate this, shipping companies will have to allow for further education while still on duty. This could be accomplished through better communications technology and standard hours set aside for coursework.

High Salaries and Benefits in the Maritime Industry

The maritime industry have some of the highest paying jobs. Furthermore, employers pay for food, transport and all other expenses linked to their employees during voyages. In addition to this, mariners receive a compulsory 16-week paid sick leave, meaning they only work for 8 to 9 months a year, yet are paid for 12 months. With mariner jobs paying between $110,000 and $130,000 to captains, engineers and officers, with a whopping $75,000 to deckhands, those who join the profession can expect to be well compensated in a very short time. These attractive benefits could help lure more candidates in to joining the maritime profession and need to be communicated to the general public.

Pay scales are also expected to increase in this industry, due to the global shortage being experienced. Many international shipping companies are prepared to pay extra to fill their vessels’ vacancies and maintain productivity.

To combat and overcome the maritime labour crisis expected in the next decade, it’s important that all stakeholders work together in educating the public and young professionals regarding the benefits and importance of the industry. Presently, it has been noted that mariners tend to hide the privileges they get from the profession, so as to maintain a monopoly in the industry.

This has slowly grown to be a major problem, which has resulted in the reduced number of professionals joining maritime courses. This in turn, has resulted in the current global mariner shortage.

Best Places for a Mining Education in Canada

mining education in canadaBest Places for a Mining Education in Canada

In the early days of the mining industry, workers got valuable, on the job training from operators already well versed in the career and industry. As an apprentice, you could learn skills across many different sectors of a mining operation. Today, advances in technology have created even more opportunities to work in the mining industry beyond manual labor.

There is also a growing need for management positions to be filled at operations all around the world. If you’re looking into a career in mining, then you’ll first want to build a solid educational foundation. Here in Canada there are 10 universities and 25 community colleges that provide courses covering all aspects of the mining industry.

If you’re not sure which specific field you want to go into, it might be helpful to start at the community college level. That way you can sample many courses to see what would be the perfect fit for your mining career. The following are lists of programs and institutions you may want to consider if you’re interested in furthering a mining education.

Mining and Mineral Engineering

As a mining engineer, you’ll be on the frontline of an operation as you focus on the design and actual construction of a mine. You’ll also be involved in the creation of the surrounding support facilities that will handle the extraction processing. These campuses offer degree programs in this field:

Metallurgical Engineering

A metallurgical engineer is focused on what happens after the metals and ores are extracted from the mine. You’ll be working on making improvements in the processing machinery and developing new ways to refine mineral commodities. Check out these campuses for a degree in this area:

Geological Engineering

If you like to travel, this is the ideal job. As a geological engineer, you’ll be researching areas that hold the potential for new mine operations. This could mean surveying in some very remote locations. It can also mean some very thrilling adventures. Here are the universities that offer this program:

Mining Operations

This is where you’ll have the ability to develop skills for the actual labor operations of a mine. You’ll get a crash course in equipment operation and the various types of jobs, from blasters to diamond drillers to prospectors. This is also a program that will put you in the field for an apprenticeship program. In other words, you’ll be learning skills and getting paid at the same time. Check out these training facilities: