University of Arizona expertise in mining spans nearly 130 years and represents long-term collaborations with industry, government, and local communities. Committed to national security and environmental responsibility, UArizona leads critical research, innovation, and workforce development in modern mining and mineral processing, use, recovery, and reuse.
"Unmet demand is a harbinger of many problems and should be avoided. By onshoring responsible mining, we can bolster sustainable supplies of many critical minerals. Sufficient supplies, in turn, reduce the possibility of shortages leading to trouble.”
— Dr. Misael Cabrera, Director, School of Mining and Mineral Resources
"The University of Arizona has a uniquely large academic community working in mining. It is unusual for so many in a single institution to be invested in mining research and to have such a legacy of work in the field."
— Dr. Kray Luxbacher, Department Head of Mining and Geological Engineering
Never before has our nation so critically needed our mining history, connections, expertise, and commitment to environmental responsibility and workforce development.
The IEA’s World Energy Outlook predicts the critical minerals market will grow from $40 billion in 2020 to $280 billion by 2030 and $400 billion by 2050.
Exponentially rising demand means we need a dramatically expanded mining workforce now and into the foreseeable future.
Our nation is caught on its back foot, explains Dr. Kray Luxbacher, Department Head, Mining and Geological Engineering: “The U.S. is down to 14 ABET-accredited mining engineering programs in the United States, and we are producing less than 500 graduates a year in total. By comparison, China produces up to 10,000 mining and associated engineers a year.”
The University of Arizona—located in the “Silicon Valley” of mining with numerous mines, processing facilities, and experienced mining professionals—is ideally positioned and firmly committed to training the future mining workforce.
“No other university in the United States has all the fields crucial to mining in one spot," says Dr. Misael Cabrera, director of the new School of Mining & Mineral Resources. These include
- mineral processing
- sustainable natural resource development
- mine operations
- public health
- environmental science
- economic geology
- and the San Xavier Underground Mining Laboratory.
Dr. Cabrera explains the role of the School of Mining & Mineral Resources: "We serve as the connective tissue between disciplines and resources, facilitating the interdisciplinarity needed to spark innovation and facilitate the integration of technologies to solve significant problems at scale.”
HISTORY OF MINING EDUCATION AT UARIZONA
No other university can match the depth and breadth of mining education at the University of Arizona:
1885: University of Arizona establishes first mining engineering program in the United States
1955: Department of Mining and Geological Engineering inaugurated
2002: Lowell Program established for professional continuing education and MA in Economic Geology
2011: Lowell Institute for Mineral Resources and University of Arizona Superfund Research Center address environmental sustainability of mining and management of legacy mining sites
2020: School of Mining and Mineral Resources inaugurated