The University of Arizona will open its new Global Mining Law Center this year. The Global Mining Law Center was established by the James E. Rogers College of Law. It will be an interdisciplinary unit that will educate lawyers on mining issues and miners on legal issues.
In addition to education, the new center will assemble leaders from across the mining spectrum to foster productive dialogue, create solutions that address pressing law and policy issues, and support cutting-edge research about the industry, the University said a release.
“We are the first academic institution with a global mining law center of this magnitude,” said Dean Marc Miller.
The center will be mainly focused on combining the expertise of the UA School of Mines and Metallurgy and the College of Law in order to educate students on the ways in which the two areas can be intertwined and often rely upon one another in the real world.
The James E. Rogers College of Law, ranked 20th in the country and first in Arizona for practical training this summer, according to a National Jurist report.
“You spend years trying to get up to speed on a lot of issues, and you waste years simply because you’re not exposed to them,” said John Lacy, the director of the Global Mining Law Center.
Lacy plans to solve this issue within the Global Mining Law Center.
“What we’ve essentially done is compress 40 years of experience into one year of instruction,” Lacy told The Arizona Daily Wildcat.
According to the College of Law, the Global Mining Law Center began their degree and non-degree training programs in August. Some of the options available to students are master’s degrees with a Mining Law and Policy focus for an LLM or an LMS. The center also has options for concentrations and certificates in Mining Law and Policy as part of the JD degree.
Part of the center’s goal is to make their resources more available. It is exploring ways to integrate their material more completely online as a result. Currently, courses in the master’s degree programs are being offered both in-residence and online.
“We are reforming some of the materials to meet the law school requirements and get them in proper shape for presenters,” Lacy said. “One of the biggest challenges has been to gather and organize the material to create the infrastructure of the program.”
Lacy said the program is designed as an international course. She said the center plans to bring in students from South America and Asia who can work on the program through online courses.
“As an international center, the Global Mining Law Center will allow us to build a broad partnership to handle many issues,” said Mary Poulton, director of the Lowell Institute for Mineral Resources at the UA.
Lacy has a positive outlook for the new college and is excited to get started.
“Ultimately we came to a critical mass, and we decided that we needed to formalize with Marc Miller’s recognition of the need to educate lawyers on these issues,” Lacy said. “We were able to find a way to collaborate with the College of Law.”