Portfolio: Future Education

Jody ThompsonAs a young practicing rock engineer, Jody has been actively involved with the rock engineering qualification in South Africa, firstly when writing and passing certificates in 2004, followed later by serving as examiner for Paper 3.1 of the COMREC hard rock mining qualification. Jody still serves as the moderator for this exam and is also actively involved in the mentoring and training of young aspiring rock engineers.

Jody holds a B.Eng (mining), COMSCC, COMREC, MSANIRE, MISRM, and says: "This portfolio is focused on sustaining, developing and improving the accepted qualification in rock engineering in South Africa. Currently, qualification to practice rock engineering relies on first obtaining a Chamber of Mines Strata Control Certificate (COMSCC), followed by a Chamber of Mines Rock Engineering Certificate (COMREC). Both certificates demand a high standard of competency and are held in high regard both nationally and internationally.

"However, several changes and other improvements to the current structure require attention. At the top of this list is the necessity to register both the current qualifications through a South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA) accredited body - something that the Chamber of Mines currently cannot provide.

"Another point of focus is to repackage the final qualification at university level under the country's Council for Higher Education whereby both national and international recognition will be improved."