As of 2016 there were 1,770 jobs classified as directly part of the mining industry in Thunder Bay. However, many more jobs indirectly make up the mining labour force as they provide support and service to the industry. This includes manufacturing, transportation, warehousing, and utilities work. See the chart below for a full breakdown.

Mining Labour Force infographic

Thunder Bay Skilled Trades & Apprenticeships

Thunder Bay is home to a highly educated and diversified skilled trades labour force. Industry experts estimate that there are approximately 6,000 trades people in Northwestern Ontario who work in the Industrial, Commercial, and Institutional sectors.

In 2016, 8.9% of the Thunder Bay labour force had some type of apprenticeship, trades certificate or diploma. This is higher than the 6% average across the province of Ontario. (Source: 2018-2019 Community Labour Plan)

This table shows a breakdown of active apprentices and journey persons. Please note that this was tabulated by the Ontario College of Trades and only included registered trades and does not include those that hold certificates for voluntary trades. (Source: 2018-2019 Community Labour Plan)

placeholder image

Academic Programs Supporting Mining in Thunder Bay

Lakehead University logoLakehead University offers 5 engineering programs to train students with design and innovation skills. These include: Engineering; Chemical Engineering; Electrical Engineering; Mechanical Engineering; and Software Engineering. Lakehead University Engineering students also have the ability to complete Mining Engineering courses online through a partnership with Queen's University.


Confederation College logoConfederation College provides a wide range of programs supporting the mining industry and skilled trades.

These include:

Training Programs

Mining Essentials Work Readiness Training Program for Aboriginal Peoples - This 12 week program provides Aboriginal Canadians with skills and training through a combination of hands-on-learning, classroom study, and site visits.

Basic Line Cutting - This 5 week program is delivered through Confederation College and prepares participants for immediate employment in mining and forestry.

Surface Diamond Driller's Helper - This program delivered through Confederation College prepares individuals for the safety and operational demands of work in the field of diamond drilling.

Recent News: Confederation College

Confederation College logoConfederation College partners with Northern Academy of Transportation Training (NATT) to offer AZ Truck Driver Program in Northwestern Ontario. This program was developed in direct response to growing demand for qualified truck drivers. Visit Confederation College's website to learn more.

For additional information please contact the Project Manager, Mining Services Sector at (807) 625-2480 or visit our Contact Us page.


Sign Up for the Go To Thunder Bay Newsletter

Why Thunder Bay

Technicians working in lab

Thunder Bay is Northwestern Ontario's commercial, administrative and medical hub.


“We ship every day… Plane leaves here at 5 o’clock every day. Our goods are in their owners hands as quick as 18 hours anywhere in North America.” - Owner, Cinevate Inc.

Quick Stats

Logo Map