Four varsities unite to find solutions to mining sector problems in South Africa.

Wits University, along with three other tertiary institutions will be part of a meeting of mining heads aiming to come up with solutions to overcome the challenges in the industry through sustainable practices. The Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy (SAIMM) will host the sixth Regional Society of Mining Professors (SOMP) conference at the Birchwood Hotel and Conference Centre, Johannesburg early next week.

Wits Head of School of Mining Engineering, Professor Cuthbert Musingwini, told Wits Vuvuzela that the involvement of Wits in the SOMP will benefit the university and students.

“The conference creates opportunities for mining academics to share best practices in mining engineering curricula,” he said.

Wits Mining Engineering Associate Professor, Rudrajit Mitra said they will be redefining the curriculum to include the aspect of how mining engineering will look in the future.

“It is important that academic institutions contribute to such a conference through academic input, to learn from other institutions, the government and research experts,” said Mitra.

Third-year BSc (Eng.) Mining Engineering student, Vhangele Khuluve, told Wits Vuvuzela that the mining industry and challenges are inseparable.

Khuluve said, “It is important to come up with ways to overcome the challenges in the mining industry and bring higher production rates with zero fatalities if possible.”

Mining Engineering Education South Africa (MEESA) consists of Wits, the University of Pretoria, the University of Johannesburg and the University of South Africa. The SOMP will take place from Monday, March 12, to Tuesday, March 13.