Hecla Greens Creek and UAS renew Pathway to Mining Careers Program with gift of $315,000

August 6, 2020

The Hecla Greens Creek Mining Company renewed its partnership with the University of Alaska Southeast Center for Mine Training this week, with a gift of $315,000 to be realized over the next three years. The gift supports the world-class workforce development program “Pathway to Mining Careers” with scholarship assistance to prepare Alaskans for key jobs in the mining industry, with an emphasis on mine mechanics specializing in underground equipment, that are vital to the overall economy of the state. The program provides a platform for Alaskans to learn more about and engage with the mining industry. It exemplifies a commitment to safety and environmental stewardship in the use of Alaskan resources.

Mike Satre commented, “The Hecla Greens Creek Mine is proud to continue its support of UAS. With this investment, we will have contributed over $1.2M since 2011 in support of developing a skilled local workforce through UAS’s renowned Center for Mine Training. Over ten percent of our diesel mechanics at the mine have started their career path at UAS and we look forward to growing that number. In this time of uncertainty it is important that we partner with our local university to provide a dependable pathway to high paying careers for the members of our community and this program does exactly that.” Sartre is the Manager of Government and Community Relations at Hecla Greens Creek Mine.

Through the generosity of Hecla Greens Creek, scholarships have been awarded along the career pathway to students who successfully apply for them and maintain their academic eligibility. Over the past 5 years nearly $300k has been awarded to students. All students within any of the Pathway programs are made aware their scholarships come directly from Hecla Greens Creek. As with student participation, overall awareness and support has grown with the program.

“This continued partnership between UAS and Hecla Greens Creeks means that another generation of Alaskans will have the support they need to start careers in one of Alaska’s most lucrative and vital industries. The need for mine mechanics with a respect for the land on which we live has been paramount to this effort. The support student’s receive from Hecla Greens Creek has beneficially furthered the career options and skills of all those who have received funding, said program coordinator Casey Bain.

The “Pathway to Mining Careers” program for high school juniors and seniors has expanded to include adults new to the mining industry. The pathway begins with an introduction to mining careers and occupations course, designed to teach students that you don’t have to be a miner to work at a mine. High school students who take this 3 credit UAS class also receive .5 high school credits. The class includes field trips, guest speakers, and hands-on activities. The next step in the pathway is the week-long “Hecla Greens Creek Mine Academy,” where students take the Mine Safety and Health Administration training which culminates in the federally-recognized certification required to work at any mine in the United States. It features the virtual mine training simulator at UAS and includes field trips to the underground mine lab.

Read the full article here.

Source: UA News Center

UAS student graduates with degree in Fisheries and Ocean Sciences

Kayla Drumm

Juneau, Alaska (KINY) – Kayla Drumm has the distinction of being the first graduate of the joint UAS/UAF Bachelor of Science in Fisheries and Ocean Sciences degree program.

Established in 2017, the Juneau-based program takes full advantage of faculty and resources at UAF, intimate class sizes at UAS, and the natural laboratory of Southeast Alaska.  Students in the program have numerous opportunities to engage in real-world science with top faculty, and easy access to the ocean, freshwater lakes and streams, the intertidal habitat, and wetlands.

“Growing up in Alaska, I have always been interested in marine life, especially fish,” notes Drumm. “I’ve always planned on staying in Alaska and have known I wanted to work in the fisheries field. I had originally enrolled in the Marine Biology Program. I started looking into the fisheries program and decided to switch to Fisheries in the Spring of 2018. It felt like a much better fit. Later that summer I found out I was pregnant with my daughter and the mix of in-person and online classes really helped me finish my degree and succeed. I would like to thank my family, friends, and professors for all the support and encouragement. I am very excited to have my degree in a field that I love and looking forward to where it will take me.”

Dr. Mike Navarro, the UAS coordinator implementing the program, remarked that it is gratifying working with colleagues at both UAS and UAF, seeing the joint degree grow from an idea into reality. Currently, there are 12 students in the program with new students expected to sign up for the fall semester.

“Many of these students share similar backgrounds as Kayla,” said Navarro. “They are working hard to earn this degree for themselves, and like Kayla, each brings with them a valuable perspective to fisheries science.”

Navarro congratulates Drumm, who he considers a trailblazer for this degree.

Read the full article here.

Source: UAS student graduates with degree in Fisheries and Ocean Sciences -KINY 800/94.9

UAA graduates some nursing students early so they can help out during pandemic

UAA School of Nursing student Krysta Byford checks vital signs on actor Danny Ashton Earll as he portrays a patient about to be discharged during a simulated patient care scenario in UAA’s Health Sciences Building Simulation Center. (James R. Evans/University of Alaska Anchorage)

With the coronavirus pandemic increasing pressure on hospitals and demand for health care workers, a handful of new nurses will be launching into the field from the University of Alaska Anchorage.

UAA’s School of Nursing recently graduated some senior students a few weeks early, allowing them to move into the health care workforce right away. The School of Nursing and College of Health offered a chance for up to 72 students in the bachelor’s and associate’s programs in good academic standing the chance to finish their last few credits on a faster timeline.

Read the full article here.

Source: UAA graduates some nursing students early so they can help out during pandemic – Anchorage Daily News

UAF School of Education to ensure graduates are prepared for distance learning

FAIRBANKS, Alaska (KTVF) The Greater Fairbanks Chamber of Commerce continues to conduct its weekly business luncheons online. Tuesday’s topic: preparing teachers for Alaska’s future at the University of Alaska Fairbanks School of Education.

School of Education director at UAF, Amy Vinlove, discussed initiatives for the program, including recruiting and supporting Alaska Native students pursuing teaching degrees.

“We are currently at the mid-point in a nine [to] 10-year grant partnership, with some external funding from a philanthropic organization, to really try to build up those strategies and those support systems and consolidate them,” Vinlove said. “This has been area where UAF has been on the forefront for almost 50 years.”

Adapting to the changing times was a topic as well. The school of education is looking to better prepare their graduates for distance learning, as many teachers and students are experiencing right now through digital and assignment-based activities.

Read the article here.

Source: UAF School of Education to ensure graduates are prepared for distance learning – KTVF

Building community, contribution and care in the time of COVID

Jim Johnsen

The University of Alaska has demonstrated resilience and resolve over many years and across many challenging issues. Alaskans support the university in helping our students, employing our graduates, providing generous contributions, and offering their time and expertise on advisory and governing boards. This partnership with our state is highlighted by how the university is giving back to help our communities and our state during the COVID-19 pandemic.

I continue to be impressed by how our faculty, students, and staff collaborate, support one another, and conduct innovative and meaningful work. I am proud to be a part of a university system that serves our communities and our state as we work daily to build a stronger, more resilient Alaska. I believe it is UA’s responsibility to examine both current and far-reaching impacts of the current crisis and to help identify solutions.

Read the full article here.

Source: Building community, contribution and care in the time of COVID – Anchorage Press