JKTech Fosters Diversity in a win with women in mining

JKTech Fosters Diversity 

Announcing the appointment of the first female ChairEducation Commission for the International Mineral Processing Council

In a win for women in mining, JKTech’s Diana Drinkwater has recently been elected as Chair, Education Commission for the International Mineral Processing Council (IMPC).  The Education Commission has been established to monitor global trends of interest to the Council regarding educational developments, skills development and skills availability in minerals processing.   Chairs of IMPC Commissions are automatically ex-officio members of the Council, which means that Diana also becomes the first female member of the IMPC council in its 60 year history.

The principal purpose of the IMPC is to maintain oversight over the various formal activities of the international mineral processing community and to represent the views of the international community of mineral processors as it sees appropriate from time to time. A major focus is management of International Mineral Processing Congresses, which usually take place every two or three years.  These highly prestigious congresses have been a major driving force in the promotion of scientific and technical knowledge in mineral processing and extractive metallurgy worldwide.  In her role with IMPC, Diana will lead a global review of mineral processing curricula around the world and an evaluation of how well it matches current industry needs.

Diana joined JKTech in the mid 1990s after 10 years in the industry as a metallurgical engineer in Australian mining operations after completion of a Bachelor of Engineering (Metallurgical) degree at the University of Queensland.  Commencing her earlier career as a metallurgist in mines around Australia, she has moved from primarily a technical role to one where her major focus is on education and professional development, most particularly in Minerals Processing and Metallurgy.  Diana has also been heavily involved in educational activities within the Australian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy (AusIMM) and the Minerals Tertiary Education Council (MTEC) as well as developing and delivering many undergraduate and postgraduate courses for The University of Queensland and other universities. 

“The International Mineral Processing Council is delighted that Diana Drinkwater has accepted appointment as the new Chair of the Education Commission.  She will succeed Professor Jan Cilliers who will nevertheless remain a member of the Commission. Under his leadership the Commission has recently published a monograph entitled “Minerals Industry: Education and Training” which was edited by Professor Cilliers, Diana Drinkwater and Professor Kari Heiskanen. This book contains the Proceedings of a Special Symposium held at the time of the 2012 Congress in New Delhi and has already attracted considerable international interest.  

Diana has indicated that the Commission will now focus on developing a critical review of the extent to which current practice globally in the teaching of mineral processing is aligned with the long-term needs of the industry.  Given her own personal interest for some years in this area of key importance to the industry it is clear that the Commission’s findings will be of great interest and value to educators and practitioners around the world,” said Cyril O'Connoer, Chairman of the International Mineral Processing Council.   

JKTech has always been an advocate for diversity in the mining industry with Dan Alexander, CEO, JKTech Pty Ltd commenting: “We are delighted that Diana has been acknowledged as a leading expert in metallurgy education on the international stage as she has extensive experience in this field.   This achievement on the global stage is testament to the outstanding value women are contributing to our industry.”

JKTech is committed to diversity and in increasing the role of women, particularly at senior levels within the minerals industry.  This has been further demonstrated with JKTech recently appointing its first female Board Member, Leeanne Bond and last year appointing a female Company Secretary and General Manager of its Commercial operations, Julia Sloman.  JKTech also has several other females holding management positions in the company across various functions here in Australia and in our global offices.

Currently women comprise around 10% of the mining industry workforce (ABS 2001 census), compared to 45% of the workforce as a whole.  JKTech’s commitment to supporting women in the industry has resulted in women currently representing approximately 40% of its workforce across technical, administration, support and management services.

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