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Uni of Adelaide joins national mining program

Wednesday, 18 February 2009

The University of Adelaide today launches its membership of the unique mining education joint venture Mining Education Australia, promising benefits for students, the mining industry and the State.

Mining Education Australia (MEA) now provides common, industry-backed mining education in four Australian states.

The State Government announced it has granted $100,000 to the University of Adelaide to support this initiative.

Minister for Mineral Resources Development Paul Holloway said the Government was strongly supportive of initiatives to develop skills for the expanding mining sector in South Australia.

"South Australia's membership of MEA confirms this State's place as a leading national provider of university-level mining engineering education," he said.

The new partnership means the University of Adelaide joins the University of New South Wales, Curtin University and the University of Queensland in providing a common curriculum to third and fourth year mining engineering students.

"Membership of Mining Education Australia is a major coup for the University of Adelaide, for the South Australian mining industry and for the State," says Professor Peter Dowd, Executive Dean of the University's Faculty of Engineering, Computer and Mathematical Sciences.

"It signals national recognition of our mining degree program and brings South Australia into a world-leading initiative in mining education. The MEA now covers mining regions throughout mainland Australia and it is believed to be the first national undergraduate degree program in Australia."

The University of Adelaide's Bachelor of Mining Engineering program started in 2007 and already has more than 200 students in first, second and third year.

MEA was formed as an unincorporated joint venture in 2006, funded by industry through the Minerals Tertiary Education Council.

"It provides new opportunities for the mining industry, the SA economy and for South Australian students and will help reduce the shortage of qualified professionals in the mining industry," says Professor Dowd.

"MEA students also have access to a much larger team of academics than any one university can offer. Students will benefit from this world-class education and the mining industry will benefit from the quality of graduates on offer."

The University's membership in MEA will be launched at a celebration at the University this afternoon with MEA, university, government and mining representatives.

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