South Dakota Tech News
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Phone: (605) 394-6082/2554 • Fax: (605) 394-6177
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 5, 2004
Contact: Steve Buchholz, Public Information Manager, 394-6082
New S.D. Tech Major Meets Industry Needs
South Dakota Tech is updating one of its traditional majors to meet the changing needs of the mining industry in South Dakota and the nation. Tech will begin offering the new major, Mining Engineering and Management, in the fall 2004 semester.
“The mining industry requires a special type of engineer, one who merges the principles of the mechanical, metallurgical, geological, electrical, environmental, and civil engineering fields, with sound business judgment,” Tech President Dr. Charles Ruch said. “Mining Engineering is a combination of these disciplines, and this new program provides the foundation not only in the various disciplines, but also in the business and management aspects of the industry.”
Mining engineers apply engineering and scientific principles to discover, appraise and extract minerals from the Earth and sea. Mining engineers may work in underground mines or in surface mines overseeing the recovery of mineral resources. A mining engineering graduate generally starts out in engineering, but progresses quickly into supervision and then into management. This new program better prepares the graduate for that progression, Ruch said.
The United States is more dependent on mineral reserves now than ever before in its history, and that dependency will continue to grow in the future. A vibrant system of mining education is fundamental to the health of the industry, Ruch said. The new program will help graduates leave Tech prepared for jobs in South Dakota and across the nation.
The program’s coursework will include mining engineering principles, management, financial analysis, human resources and contract negotiations. The
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new program has been designed to satisfy accreditation requirements for both Mining Engineering and Engineering Management disciplines.
“By establishing the program in this way, Tech graduates from this program will possess a unique, strong management emphasis along with a strong mining engineering education that will set them apart from their peers,” Ruch said. “The broader educational program will enable the graduates to better serve the needs of the mining industry of today and the future.”
Creating the program took time, but the hard work resulted in a major the campus is proud to offer.
“The approval of this new program by the South Dakota Board of Regents was the culmination of almost three years effort by university administration, the Mining Engineering faculty, and the Mining Engineering Industrial Advisory Board,” Ruch said
Tech’s Mining Engineering Industrial Advisory Board membership includes highly-placed Mining Engineering alumni from the coal mining and the hardrock mining industries, the explosives industry, mining equipment manufacturing and sales, and the quarry mining industry.
“Three years ago, it looked as though we were going to lose the Mining Engineering degree program at Tech,” Ruch said. “Our Industrial Advisory Board presented a proposal that was accepted to raise funds needed to support the design, implementation, and maintenance of the new program”.
Tech then hired a consultant with 10 years experience as chair and professor of a mining engineering program at a leading university in the United States. The new curriculum is the result of extensive consultation with the mining industry, including with Tech alums.
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Devereaux Library. South Dakota School of Mines and Technology.