Call it March Mining Madness. At the 39th International Collegiate Mining Competition in Kentucky, student and alumni teams from the United States, Canada, Australia, the United Kingdom and Brazil tested their skills in seven old-fashioned mining skills, including panning for gold, surveying land and laying railroad track.
Seven alumni from the University of Arizona's mining and geological engineering program competed in the alumni division, coming in second place.
The competition commemorates the 91 miners who died in the 1972 Sunshine mine disaster and continues to honor all miners who have lost their lives while on the job. The rivalry is fierce, but the atmosphere is decidedly friendly with the focus on fun, teamwork, networking and paying respect to the industry's heritage.
The following alumni competed on behalf of the UA:
- John Featherston BS/MGE 2011
- Tim George BS/MGE 2007
- Robert Tracy BS/MGE 2011
- Cris Valenzuela BS/MGE 2008
- David Vatterrodt BS/MGE 2004
- Will Werner BS/MGE 2011.
Photo: A team competes in the 39th International Collegiate Mining Competition at the University of Kentucky.