Vizcaya folks complete mining course
An environment-safe and friendly underground mining training facility here has produced modern miners ready to be deployed to different mine sites both local and overseas.
They were OceanaGold Batch 11 trainees from Nueva Vizcaya province who completed their 12-week Underground Metalliferous Mining Work Readiness Course at the Site Skills Training (SST) Clark Campus in Pampanga.
In 2015, OceanaGold opened the $2-million Underground Training Facility (UTF) here. It is Asia’s first of its kind in modern mining operations for the company’s personnel training, with the aim of boosting operational efficiency.
OceanaGold is an Australian-based mine firm contracted by the Philippine government to extract minerals in the copper and gold-rich upland village of Didipio in Kasibu town in Nueva Vizcaya.
The company tapped 24 miners from the Philippines in the latest mining audit led by the national government with a score of 2.92. The passing score is 1.5 and the highest is 3.0.
The UTF operated in collaboration with SST Clark that is part of Site Group International (SGI), a registered training organization under the Australian Skills Quality Authority (ASQA).
It sits on a 240-square-meter developed property that has a metalliferous-mining simulator, allowing trainers to use mining equipment commonly used in mining operations with standbys and drives for jumbo operations, fuel refilling, vehicle storage, a refuge chamber, crib room and magazine replicating the areas with the same equipment found within an underground mine.
The recently held graduation was attended by OceanaGold (Philippines) Inc. officials, including Paul Mitchel, mining operations superintendent; Moises Dimalia, learning and development supervisor; and Ruben Babbayong, mining training coordinator.
In his remarks, Brett McPhee, SST Philippines general manager, recognized OceanaGold for its commitment to employee development and exemplary community relations program.
MacPhee said safety is of paramount importance and noted that the training partnership has been instrumental, over the years, in equipping graduates with the required safety knowledge for underground mine work.
For OceanaGold, Dimalia enjoined the graduates to take to heart the company’s six values of respect, teamwork, innovation, action, accountability and integrity.
He also reminded the new graduates that when they are aligned with those values, “together we can confidently achieve goals and withstand challenges ahead.”