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As Avalon has embarked upon its journey towards sustainability, we continually look to the future. Given the limited rare metals course material (particularly for rare earths) in North American universities, one of the opportunities for Avalon is enhancing the availability of trained and experienced employees to finance, design, build and operate rare metals facilities. Avalon’s journey is also about encouraging innovation and the entrepreneurial spirit among students to create cutting edge technologies that leverage rare metals resources.

During 2011, Avalon embarked upon an ambitious program, under the banner of University Student Outreach Initiative. The primary objectives of this outreach initiative are:

  • To build and enhance the talent pools needed to design, improve and operate facilities.
  • To encourage and enable the needed science, engineering and business talent pools to strengthen Canada’s emerging downstream processing and rare metals applications supply chains.
  • To engage broad audiences of undergraduate science and engineering students, graduate level business students, and faculty around rare metals, particularly rare earths.

Avalon is achieving this by introducing rare earth-related subjects into course curricula, and identifying and mentoring an international network of research, development and operational capabilities. Company representatives have delivered lectures to undergraduate chemistry, metallurgy, mining and geology classes, led graduate business seminars, and sponsored student projects and case competitions. Avalon has also sponsored students to participate in industry conferences, provided relevant co-op terms and research initiatives, thus cultivating the next generation of engineers and business leaders.

The Universities and related initiatives Avalon has been working with include:

  • Canadian MBA Leadership Conference
  • McGill University
  • Ryerson University
  • Schulich School of Business
  • York University, Schulich School of Business
  • University of British Columbia, Mining Engineering
  • University of Toronto
  • University of Windsor
  • Waterloo Institute of Nanotechnology
  • Western University

For more information or to get your school involved, email