The CIM Edmonton Branch is one of the most active branches in Canada. On the first Monday of each month, from September to April, a CIM buffet dinner with guest speaker at the University of Alberta (U of A) Faculty Club provides an excellent networking opportunity for industry and students. Attendance is composed of 65% students, 25% industry, 10% retired industry. Technical presentations keep industry up to date with the latest projects in mining, current trends and provide additional expertise in interest areas.
In order to attract and engage our student population, complimentary dinners are provided for those students who attend. Current enormous labour shortages make it necessary to encourage our younger generation to attend events, network with industry, enquire about future employment, and discover what CIM has to offer. Annually, $6,000 is given out in branch scholarships. Also, 2 students are selected to attend the National CIM conference. They receive airfare, accommodation and registration compliments of the branch. Every 3rd-year student receives a complimentary SME mining reference book. Our branch encourages students to participate on the executive and be a part of ongoing branch events.
Students organize and administrate the branches’ outreach educational program, started 3 decades ago by infamous industry member Gord Morris. In the mining industry, if you ever need to find a mining contact, only Gord knows who to call. In fact, Gord has probably forgotten more about mining then the students will ever learn. Through Edmonton Public and Catholic schools, teachers contact the U of A mining engineering students to attend their classes, inform the students about mining and processing with a hands-on “chocolate cookie activity.” They learn about geology, mining, processing and of course the environment. The visits to the schools not only capture the attention of youngsters from grades 3 to 8—they also provide a venue for university students to appreciate volunteerism and get involved in community responsibility prior to graduation.
Now that we have the students' attention, we need to engage our industry partners to support our branch endeavours. The U of A boasts the largest mining school enrolment in the world. We welcome suggestions, ideas, and alterations to our events to accommodate and ensure your attendance and much needed support.