Women advance careers in mining through tech
In mining, technological advancements helped provide women more opportunities to be on equal footing with their counterparts in what was once a male dominated world.
In the Cordillera, women occupying key positions in mining companies said the integration of technology in mining operations made jobs less physical, which allowed them to perform works that used to be assigned to men.
“The mining industry used to be dominated by men because of the physical demands of the job. With technology and innovation, work became less physical. This has given us the opportunity to work in mine operations,” said Engr. Lyza Dim Apioten, chief mine engineer of Itogon-Suyoc Resources, Inc. (ISRI).
Apioten said the software they use help their male counterparts visualize the mine plans they give them.
“Technology has allowed us to better demonstrate our ideas. If they agree, they implement it,” she said during a media forum that highlighted how technology helps in achieving gender equality in line with this year’s theme for International Women’s Day theme, DigitAll: Innovation and technology for gender equality.
Mines and GeosciencesBureau-Cordillera Director Faye Apil said there have been an increasing number of women taking up degrees in Mining Engineering and those who are actually applying for jobs in mining firms.
The women working in mining companies in the region said their firms are also advocates of gender equality as proven by the number of women occupying managerial positions in various companies.
Philex Mining Corp. Chief Finance Manager Roselyn Dahilan said the company has been providing equal opportunities for men and women even before the movement for gender equality started.
Philex, she said, has 14 women out of the company’s 59 employees occupying managerial positions.
Dahilan added the increase in the number of women working and climbing the ladders in mining firms is also attributed to their enhanced competencies.
Based on the records of the MGB-Cordillera, there are 512 women employed in various mining firms.
Benguet Corp. has 71 females and 386 males; ISRI, 70 females and 628 males; Lepanto Consolidated Mining Company, 175 females and 1,544 males, and Philex Mining Corp., 196 females and 2,232 males. – Jane B. Cadalig