WHITEHORSE—The governments of Yukon and Alaska, along with Yukon College and the University of Alaska, signed a new Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) today in Juneau to promote mutual cooperation in industrial and mine training.
“There is mutual benefit for Yukon and Alaska to share mining-related educational programming and information,” Yukon Education Minister Scott Kent said. “This Memorandum of Agreement provides an opportunity for further cooperation in the pursuit of our similar needs and interests.”
Hard rock mines – both surface and underground – in addition to placer mines, operate in Yukon and Alaska. The need for common training and expertise is just one aspect of the expanding relationship between Yukon and Alaska.
“Alaska and Yukon have some very similar workforce needs. With this agreement, we can work together to coordinate and develop world-class training to fill these needs,” Alaska Labor Commissioner Dianne Blumer said. “Both the University of Alaska and Yukon College have specialized mine training programs that can benefit from coordination.”
Cooperation between the two jurisdictions is already underway, with officials from Yukon College touring the University of Alaska’s Underground Mine Training Program this week.
“Mine training provides a solid cornerstone for our desire to expand reciprocal opportunities between Yukon College and University of Alaska,” Yukon College president Karen Barnes said. “There is a tradition of excellent industrial training in Juneau and we hope to learn a great deal from our partners there.”
The MOA is an appendix to the existing Alaska-Yukon Intergovernmental Relations Accord that was signed by Premier Darrell Pasloski and Governor Sean Parnell last June. It underscores the importance of the working relationship between Alaska and Yukon and commits both sides to work together and promote mutually beneficial job training, energy production and economic development.
To view the Alaska-Yukon Intergovernmental Relations Accord, visit eco.gov.yk.ca/igr/accords.html.