New collaboration between Western New Mexico University and global mining company Freeport-McMoRan

Silver City, New Mexico: 13 June 2018 – Western New Mexico University and global mining company Freeport-McMoRan New Mexico Operations are now collaborating with the mission of preparing welders for employment in Grant County’s Chino and Tyrone mines.

Freeport-McMoRan New Mexico Operations donated $10,000 to Western New Mexico University’s Department of Community and Workforce Development, which runs the applied technology programs, designating the funding specifically for the purchase of training equipment and supplies in the welding program.

With Freeport’s needs in mind, Western New Mexico University will begin introducing new processes into the existing welding program and may in the future be able to offer continuing education courses for those already welding in the mining industry.

“Universities need to be more responsive to corporate needs,” Western New Mexico University President Dr. Joseph Shepard said. “The partnership with Freeport-McMoRan not only illustrates this but also enhances the local economy by providing meaningful opportunities for our local workforce.”

This collaboration also prepares Western New Mexico University welding students for employment at Freeport’s operations, enabling them to get hired without leaving the community they’re rooted in and allowing them to jump into higher-paying positions.

Western New Mexico University’s applied technology programs provide welding students practice in the fundamentals and also give students the chance to develop heavy duty welding skills for application in the mining industry both locally and internationally.

A Western New Mexico University welding technology student and mother whose training in industrial welding applications helped her land a job near her hometown.

For 125 years, Western New Mexico University has served the people in its region as a comprehensive, rural, public body. As a Hispanic-Serving Institution and the state’s only public Applied Liberal Arts and Sciences university, WNMU is committed to developing cross-cultural opportunities that encourage people to explore new experiences. WNMU’s student body represents every segment of southwest New Mexico’s diverse population.