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2010-08-26 at 16:59

Program aims to get communities career ready for mining

AETS project officer John DeGiacomo
Jamie Smith,
AETS project officer John DeGiacomo
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By Jamie Smith,
A new pilot program will help people in First Nations communities ready for a career in mining.

The Anishnabek Employment and Training Services Mining Essentials programs will train 10 people from Pic River First Nation and Pic Mobert First Nation for entry-level positions for Barrick-Hemlo. AETS project officer John DeGiacomo said the program is one of three pilot programs being launched across Canada.

He said people taking the 20-week course would be ready for hundreds of positions for the expected mining boom in the region.

"It could very well be underground it could be above ground," he said. "This really is cutting edge type training that will help position and engage Aboriginals in their communities to help them make a difference in their communities."

While focusing on mining training, DeGiacomo said the program will be unique because it will be tailored to First Nations people specifically through things like cultural sensitivity.

Developed with the mining industries’ human resource council and elders from Pic River and Pic Mobert, DeGiacomo said the program will be a win-win.

"It’s crucial to have the involvement of Aboriginals," he said. "To make sure that the curriculum reflective of the types of need that both parties have."

The program, which starts next month, already has 30 applicants.

Banner/Vector Construction


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