Armanda Quinn from Goldcorp’s Porcupine Gold Mines has built a rock-solid career at Goldcorp and has recently won the 2018 Influential Women of Northern Ontario Tradeswomen of the Year Award. As her proud employer, we share with you her career journey, so she can be an inspiration to everyone.
Armanda was hired at Porcupine in 2008 as a Mill Shift Labourer. Though she had never worked in milling, Armanda advanced to the position of Mill Operator 1 in just 3.5 years. Her extensive training, dedication and sheer motivation, fast-tracked her advancement to this top job classification, which can normally take up to five years to achieve. As a Mill Operator 1, she mastered all the Mill Modules for Operators that included utility, crushing, grinding, carbon in pulp process, effluent treatment plant and cyanide destruct process.
In June 2011, Armanda took on a different challenge and transferred to the Dome Mine Underground Department to begin training as an underground miner. Again, Armanda had never worked underground, but she received Underground Common Core training in scaling, drilling, blasting, ground support, mucking, haulage, track installation and maintenance. She successfully advanced to the position of Miner 3 on the Service Crew installing and maintaining underground track. Armanda currently holds the position of Underground Safety Coordinator at Hoyle Pond Mine, part of the Porcupine District in Ontario.
In addition to her career achievements, Armanda is also an active member of the Underground Mine Rescue team. The training required to join the Mine Rescue Team is both physically and mentally challenging, and Armanda was the first woman in Porcupine Gold Mine’s history to become a member of the team. She was also voted by her colleagues to join the Mine Rescue Competition Team, again as the first woman to do so, and served as one of the coaches for the team last year.
To help support other women at Goldcorp to achieve their full potential and reach their goals, Armanda became a facilitator in Goldcorp’s Growing Choices program and served as a mentor in the Creating Choices program.
Armanda is also a member of the Metis Nation of Ontario and has participated in the Porcupine Gold Mines Cultural Competency Committee, which helps the workforce learn about Indigenous issues.
Armanda also served as a Union Steward, representing her fellow employees on the Union Executive for the United Steelworkers Union at Dome Mine. She has also become an underground trainer and is currently training to become a spare supervisor by completing the Supervisory Common Core training, and has her certification in Advanced First Aid.
Armanda shared with the crowd during her acceptance speech, “I’d like to recognize my employer, Goldcorp Porcupine Gold Mines for their nomination and for always believing in me. After a decade in mining, what started as a job has quickly transformed into a career. Now in my current role as Safety Coordinator, I have a strong voice and the power to influence, redefine and challenge status quo helping to improve safety culture and shape the mining landscape. I’ve been empowered by the training I’ve received from various leadership development programs along the way.”
Armanda continued, “Currently, the mining sector can be an especially isolating workplace for women, so there is a need for programs like Creating Choices to give her access to essential training and the knowledge to achieve success in the industry. These programs also provide a space where women can come together and network within the company and when this happens, we recognize one another as allies. This isn’t about token females, recruitment quotas or preferential treatment – this is about giving everyone a fair chance at self fulfillment and economic stability.”
“This award couldn’t have come at a better time while I’m off on maternity leave. It’s a pleasure to be acknowledged at a time when you may not feel so relevant to your workplace. Thank you for his honour from the bottom of my heart, I would like accept on behalf of myself and all women who have found employment in the mining sector, both past and present.”
Congratulations Armanda on a very well-deserved award!