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Turning miners into coders

LMC, a Czech recruitment company and a subsidiary of Alma Media, launched a training project in late 2016 in southeastern Czech Republic, where the mining industry, which has been the traditional source of jobs in the region, is struggling with structural changes.

LMC joined forces with a local NGO and the Technical University of Ostrava to turn miners into coders. 

A total of 70 miners participated in the project’s initial one-day introductory session, with some of the participants going on to learn coding independently online. The project was then concluded by a five-month intensive course, which four miners were invited to enrol in following a strict screening process. Almost all of the four participants in the intensive course were over 50 years of age. Their retraining ended with four months of practical work training as a programmer, after which they received their formal qualifications.  

“At the start of the project, we had hoped it might result in perhaps one real-life example of someone in their 50s making a giant career leap from a dying occupation to a profession of the future. Instead, we had four such examples,” says Tomáš Ervín Dombrovský, Head of Analysis, Communication and Relations at LMC.

“I have been very impressed by what these men achieved with a little bit of help from us and the other partners,” Dombrovský adds.