View Comments
Ron Sayers. Picture: Ian Munro/The West Australian.
The West Australian Ron Sayers. Picture: Ian Munro/The West Australian.

A mine workers training academy at the Muresk Institute near Northam is a step closer to reality after an agreement between mining contractor Ausdrill, vocational education company Site Group and the State Government.

The academy, to be built on land acquired from Curtin University, will deliver training in the operation of all heavy earthmoving equipment, blast-hole drilling, exploration drilling and shot firing.

The academy will run as a campus-style facility incorporating a working hard rock mine and provide hands-on training in a controlled environment.

It will aim to produce site-ready workers for the resources industry by targeting young people, indigenous Australians and experienced workers looking to add to their skills.

The academy will also examine the feasibility of training prisoners from nearby Wooroloo Prison Farm as part of their pre-release program.

Site and Ausdrill have been working on the academy concept for the past 12 months.

Ausdrill chief executive Ron Sayers said the resources sector required more than 1000 extra people a week.

"The academy will help address the skills shortage that is currently plaguing the resources sector by combining employment offices as well as training facilities to deliver a 'one-stop-shop' bringing people into our industry," he said.

"My sincere hope is that it will provide young people with the best possible training as they embark on their careers in the mining industry."