Sabina Shugg, incoming Director of the Western Australian School of Mines, says a new curriculum at the institution will ensure graduates are on top of technological changes in the industry.

Her appointment comes at a time of upheaval for the 117-year-old mining school, with cuts to academic staff in the face of dwindling student numbers.

Curtin University Vice-Chancellor Deborah Terry said WASM was adapting the curriculum to facilitate emerging areas such as robotics, data analytics and additive manufacturing.

“As a passionate advocate for the sector, Ms Shugg will also support Curtin’s continued efforts to promote the profile of the mining industry to the next generation of mining workers, with a particular focus on female school students to encourage greater gender equality across the industry,” Professor Terry said.

Ms Shugg said a major focus of her role would be ensuring the new curriculum enabled students to transition from the classroom to a rewarding job in the mining industry.

“I look forward to ensuring students are properly equipped to embrace the technological advances currently transforming the sector,” the former KPMG national mining lead said.

Outgoing WASM Director Sam Spearing said there were signs student enrolments were improving.

“I think with the efforts that Curtin University and the industry have done, enrolments have finally turned the corner and are going to continue to increase,” he said.

Image: Sabina Shugg, Kalgoorlie Miner.