Gearing Up – Developing Mining Talent through Work-Integrated Learning


What is Gearing Up?

Announced in the 2016 federal budget, the Government of Canada’s Student Work-Integrated Learning Program (SWILP) brings industry stakeholders together to create new work-integrated learning (WIL) opportunities for students to be better positioned to secure employment in their field of study.

Gearing Up is the new WIL Program for Canada’s mining sector. Led by the Mining Industry Human Resources Council (MiHR), Gearing Up will create 850 new WIL opportunities in mining over four years. Wage subsidies up to $7,000 will be available to employers who create new WIL opportunities such as co-ops, internships, field placements, applied projects, capstone projects or case competitions.

What is Gearing Up’s Objective?

Through Gearing Up, MiHR – in collaboration with a consortium made up of mining companies, relevant mining service providers and post-secondary institutions – will change the way students in mining-related post-secondary education programs perceive, pursue and acquire the skills needed for in-demand mining careers.

How will Gearing Up Achieve its Objective?

Gearing Up consists of five main project ‘gears’, each comprised of sub components that support overall project objectives.

1. Industry-Education Partnerships

A consortium of mining companies and post-secondary institutions to help guide and inform Gearing Up, build the business case for WIL, be ambassadors for the program and offer WIL opportunities to students.

2. Attraction of Key Talent

Awareness, outreach and recruitment strategies will promote the mining industry, its career opportunities and encourage program participation.

3. Remove Workplace Barriers

Training that addresses systemic barriers to gender equity in mining and cross-cultural communication will be required to receive a wage subsidy.

4. 850 Mining WIL Opportunities

The Gearing Up registry office will administer a wage subsidy to employers who create new WIL placements, consisting of co-ops, internships, applied projects, field placements and non-traditional WIL opportunities.

5. Evaluation and Sustainability

Ongoing and timely information collection and analysis will be fed back to the Consortium to ensure program sustainability.

What is the Gearing Up Consortium?

The Gearing Up Consortium will help shape the next generation of Canada’s mining workers! Employers within the mining sector, relevant mining service providers, industry associations and post-secondary institutions providing mining-related studies are eligible to join. The 40+ members of the Consortium will work together to implement Gearing Up activities and inform how industry and education can work together more collaboratively through work-integrated learning. By being Gearing Up Consortium members, employers will gain access to funds and leverage talent for future recruitment needs by equipping their workplaces for effective, inclusive and successful WILs. Post-secondary institutions will increase students’ job readiness by assessing, adapting and refining mining-related programs and curriculum to better meet the demands of industry through WIL.

About the Mining Industry Human Resources Council

The Mining Industry Human Resources Council (MiHR) is the national human resource and labour market council for Canada’s minerals and metals sector. It is the catalyst that drives collaboration among industry stakeholders to understand labour market trends, identify opportunities and develop solutions to mining’s human resource challenges. For full Gearing Up program and eligibility criteria, call the Mining Industry Human Resources Council (MiHR) at 613.270.9696 or email us at Visit