Local students can begin their mining diploma without going too far from home.

Through a new pilot project, the College of New Caledonia and the Northwest Community College now offer the first year of BCIT’s Mineral Exploration and Mining Technology program.

CNC Interim Associate Dean Jan Jonker hopes this will keep future workers in the area.

“When people are recruited from Vancouver, they will come and work but once winter hits they’ll pack up and go down South again, so the retention is very low,” he says, “the idea behind this is to train people from the community so we can retain them in those communities.”

Students would have to move to Burnaby to take the program’s second year on BCIT campus.

This photo was taken from the BC Government’s Flickr website.