If indeed “imitation is the sincerest form of flattery,” then the Ontario Mining Association has a big fan in an antipodean counterpart. The South Australian Chamber of Mines and Energy (SACOME) has recently launched “Dirt TV – what mining means to me.” This student video competition for seven to 12-year-olds is modeled along the lines of the OMA’s So You Think You Know Mining high school video competition.
Jason Kuchel, chief executive of SACOMBE says he was so impressed by the SYTYKM competition when he was in Toronto at the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada convention in 2012, that he was motivated to use the initiative as a model for a similar competition in South Australia.
“South Australia also has a strong mining and oil and gas industry,” said Kuchel. “The competition works on so many levels, including building community awareness of the benefits of the sector, increasing understanding of career opportunities among high school children and addressing the science and arts curriculums with a practical, real world example that is also a lot of fun.”
“The SYTYKM competition’s growth over recent years is remarkable and truly inspirational,” added Kuchel. SACOME announced the “Dirt TV” initiative at an event attracting more than 400 resource industry professionals and politicians in South Australia last month. The inaugural 2014 competition aims to raise awareness of the mining and energy sector among students in a fun and interactive way.
“We wish SACOME every success in the world with its Dirt TV initiative,” said OMA president Chris Hodgson. “We are delighted to see a related industry organization recognize the benefits of SYTYKM and adapt it to its own jurisdiction and education system.”
“OMA staffer Adriana Stech has helped share the experiences of developing SYTYKM with the people at SACOME involved with getting Dirt TV off the ground,” added Hodgson. “We know the South Australian judging panel, SACOME and industry people will enjoy viewing the talented and innovative productions of Dirt TV entrants.”
Closer to home, season six of So You Think You Know Mining is well under way. It was launched on Nov. 1, 2013. This year $40,000 in prize money is available. SYTYKM is supported by comprehensive web-based resources and a social media network that includes Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and Pinterest. Contest details, video upload instructions, production ideas and past winning entries are all available on the OMA website at www.OMA.on.ca.
From a modest start in October 2008, the SYTYKM competition has grown to attract a large number of solid and creative entries from across the province. We look forward to receiving more exciting and imaginative video productions by March 21, 2014. The best of class will be recognized at the Royal Ontario Museum on Tuesday, June 3, 2014 at the SYTYKM awards gala. Oscar-style trophies – and cheques – await the winners.
*Peter McBride is the manager of communications at the Ontario Mining Association.