Hecla Greens Creek "Pathway to Mining Careers"
For high school juniors and seniors
The Hecla Greens Creek Mining Company knows that training and hiring local talent is a win, win situation for everyone. Unfortunately many local young people don't realize the opportunities they have in their own back yard. In 2011, Hecla decided to do something to change that, in a big way, by donating $300,000 to the UAS Center for Mine Training to develop a unique approach to engage local high school students and to educate and train them for future employment in the mine industry. With this in mind, the Hecla Greens Creek Pathway to Mining Careers was created.
Outreach has expanded since then to include adults who may be new to the mining industry, however, the mission remains the same.
STEP 1 Introduction to Mining Careers and Occupations course
Those who would like to know more about mining and mining careers can take Introduction to Mining Careers and Occupations at UAS. This class is designed to teach students that you don't have to be a miner to work at a mine and to answer important questions like "what exactly is a bull gang and how do I become a member." High school students who take this 3 credit UAS class will also receive .5 high school credits. The class will include field trips, guest speakers, movies and hands on activities.
STEP 2 The Hecla Greens Creek Mine Academy
For students who would like to learn more about mining, the next stop is a 2 week Mine Academy. Here, students take the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) training which will result in the federally recognized certification required to work at any mine in the United States. Students will also get to feel what it's like operating mining equipment in a virtual mine training simulator and take field trips into the CMT underground mine lab.
STEP 3 Job Shadow Experience
At this point, most students should have a pretty good idea if working at a mine is in the cards for them or not. Now it's time to get an "up close and personal" look at how a mine works through a job shadow experience at the Greens Creek Mine. Selected students will be assigned their own Greens Creek "mentor" who will guide them through their experience at the mine site. Students may choose to job shadow employees in a variety of fields throughout the mining operation.
STEP 4 Enter a Program
Now it's decision time. Students who are sure that a mining career is for them must choose what kind of training or education is right for what they want to do. For those interested in becoming a mine mechanic, the UAS School of Career Education's Diesel Department offers a 1 year Mine Mechanic Occupational Endorsement and a 2 year Mine Mechanic AAS degree. Selected students may qualify for scholarships and internships through the Hecla Greens Creek Mine.
STEP 5 Employment
Of course, the ultimate goal of the pathway is a career in mining. Committed students who successfully follow the pathway and complete a Mine Mechanic program will be considered for employment at the Hecla Greens Creek Mine.