Are there civil engineers with mining-related experience out of work? More specifically are there geotechnical engineers with mining-related experience out of work? I ask those questions because I think of myself as a civil engineer with mining-related geotechnical experience.
To answer these questions, I went to InfoMine’s CareerMine. I have the password to access the resume database and here is what I found. Of the 26o resumes categorized under engineering-USA, I found nine resumes of people who call themselves civil and/or geotechnical engineers. Only four have what I would consider to be relevant mining-related experience. There are two PhDs, five MSs, and the rest have a bachelor’s degree. Three of the MS degrees are from the New Mexico Institute of Mining & Technology in Soccorro.
Of the nine, three are from India, two are from Ghana, one from Turkey, one from Peru, and two are US citizens. One is from California, so I looked further into his experience. He describes himself thus:
I am an experienced professional civil engineer (20+ years)with a master’s degree in mineral economics and some mining industry experience. I am seeking an engineering opportunity, possibly leading to a future business position. I am extremely passionate with respect to mining and economics. I would be thrilled to have the opportunity to work, contribute and learn as a member of a mining company or mining engineering consulting firm.
Here is how he describes his last job in California:
Prepared economic analyses (engineering alternates and discounted cash flow), inflation and escalation estimates, cost estimates, water balance studies, climate (wet year/dry year and 24-hr multi-return period rainfall exceedance probability estimates) and hydrology studies (TR-20 peak discharge), floodplain analyses, and grading and drainage plans for heap leach gold, silver, copper and nickel mining projects in the United States, Canada, Mexico, Latin America and overseas. Estimated process and overflow pond emergency conditions storage volumes. Sized multi-stack and dynamic (on/off) pad designs, including single and articulated options. Created surface models and estimated earthwork and rock removal volumes using AutoCad Civil 3D 2008. Estimated preliminary conveyance and stacking equipment types and quantities. Completed MSHA mine safety training.
Sounds like a good fellow for a consultant or mining company. But there are few jobs like this in California.
So I went to the CareerMine jobs section. There are 420 mining-related jobs posted in the USA section. Not that many really! 188 of the jobs are categorized as for Engineers. The first job I found for a Senior Geotechnical Engineer is “a recognized engineering consulting firm with international projects seeking someone to provide technical leadership in expanding the firm’s capabilities in geoengineering.” They seek somebody with five or more year’s experience and at least a master’s degree. Sound like they are looking for somebody to market for them. Our fellow above might just qualify.
The next job I found was for “a reputable, full-service environmental engineering and consulting firm with 45 offices throughout the US seeking a Civil/Mining Engineer to use current contacts to assist in project bidding.” Sounds like an ad for a person expected to bring their friends and clients with them.
A company in Nevada is seeking a bona fide geotechnical engineer to “manage design-build projects in North America.” That might be fun.
SRK in Tucson is seeking a civil-geotechnical engineer with at least fifteen years of experience in a mining environment involving: mine waste design and management; tailings, earthworks, and heap pad design; and ponds, water management and storage. In addition you need effective communications and management skills. They are going to look hard for all that. None of the nine resumes I found really meets their stringent criteria. In fact, I am not even sure I would meet their requirements–probably too old.
And that is it for the USA.
Maybe our nine USA-located geotechnical engineers are going to have to relocate to Canada. A quick search provided twenty five job openings for geotechnical engineers in Canada. Not all for mining, but predominantly so.
I am not sure what all this tells you. You could undertake similar searches for different professions and for different countries. Maybe it is the old story: few jobs for good candidate; and few good candidates for the jobs. As my son would say: whatever, get on with looking. Good luck to all who are looking and to all who are seeking. Let us know if you succeed.