Roundup Review 07
Mineral Exploration Roundup 2007 “Leading the World in Exploration” was another exceptional event, with attendance exceeding expectations. The atmosphere in the conference halls of the Westin Bayshore, Vancouver, was electric with the energy and enthusiasm generated by the 6,016 participants. Delegates and their guests were treated to the best of Vancouver–gorgeous clear days which made the beauty of the snow-capped North Shore Mountains that much more breathtaking.
Roundup 2007 highlighted both Canadian and international exploration activities and mineral projects at all stages of development. Over the past few years this technical conference has drawn an increasing number of international participants which is a testament to the growing reputation of the conference. This year’s event also drew an increase in participation by Aboriginal groups.
The four-day event, which is hosted by the Association for Mineral Exploration BC (AME BC), was opened with speeches by conference chairman Randy Turner, Chief Ian Campbell of the Squamish First Nations, Honourable Gary Lunn (Minister of Natural Resources Canada), Honourable Bill Bennett (former Minister of State for Mining), and AME BC chair Rob Pease.
This year’s Roundup introduced a new, somewhat sobering but very important element: prostrate screening tests. Roundup organizing committee collaborated with the Providence Health Care and the BC Foundation for Prostate Disease to offer free prostate specific antigen (PSA) testing. Over 200 men took advantage of the opportunity to have the simple blood test. Dr. Larry Goldenberg, chair of the Department of Urological Sciences at the University of British Columbia, gave an engaging introduction to the clinic and the need for awareness, during the opening segment of the conference.
The staple features of the conference–the short courses that precede the actual event, the technical sessions, the trade show whose success has challenged the capacity of the commodious Westin Bayshore, and the poster session–were all very well attended. Outside, in giant white field tents were the core shack, prospector’s tent and a new addition to Roundup, the map tent.
The other staple feature of Roundup–the social events–as usual provided a relaxed ambience in which to connect with old friends and colleagues and forge new business relationships. One aspect of Roundup that is always rewarding is the bringing together of a wonderful mix of people at all ages and stages of their careers, from all corners of the world, who share a common interest.
The hard-working Roundup committee always endeavours to anticipate the future needs of the industry and build up that aspect of the conference. The emerging need to attract new industry recruits is a concern, and with that in mind, Roundup has developed a number of student-oriented events. The student networking evening is a special time for students and AME BC members to meet and discuss career aspirations and employment opportunities. Roundup takes the focus a bit further with the Roundup Rockhound program, a collaborative effort between AME BC and the Mineral Resources Education Program of B.C., which brings over 100 elementary students to the conference and introduces them to the world of mineral exploration.
Mineral Exploration Roundup will be celebrating its 25th anniversary in 2008. Roundup has grown from a luncheon meeting in 1984 to the world’s largest technical mineral exploration conference, so there is much to celebrate. Organizers are planning a particularly outstanding conference, so mark Jan. 28-31, 2008, on your calendars and book early for hotel rooms and the events that require tickets. Please visit www.amebc.ca/roundupoverview .htm for more information.
Julie Domvile is a freelance writer based in Victoria, B.C., and can be reached at [email protected].