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Student Organizations


The Society for Mining, Metallurgy and Exploration, Inc. (SME) is a national professional society with the objectives of fostering standards of professionalism, promoting technologic information exchange, providing opportunities for comradeship and recognizing professional service and accomplishment. In order to insure the future of mining engineering as a professional discipline, SME sponsors numerous student chapters at colleges and universities that offer mining engineering, mineral processing or geology in their curricula.

The basic purpose of SME’s student chapters is to get students involved in their professional society early in order to:

  • encourage involvement in the society’s activities
  • assist and encourage students’ growth as professionals
  • encourage their continued involvement (and membership) as they move from the campus to jobs in industry or academia

The Norwood Student Chapter of SME at the University of Kentucky is named for Charles J. Norwood, the first head of the State of Kentucky’s mine safety agency, who later went on to be the head of the College of Mining at UK. Mr. Norwood was inspector of mines from 1884 to 1893, chief inspector of mines from 1893 to 1896 and again from 1902 to 1919. All mining engineering students at the University of Kentucky are invited and encouraged to be part of this organization.

The student organization meets regularly for technical presentations by industry personnel and informal sessions geared toward planning and information exchange. Several field trips are scheduled each year. These include trips to surface and underground mines in Kentucky and neighboring states and attendance at regional SME meetings. Each year a few students are selected to represent the student chapter at the SME annual meeting. There are also numerous social events such as picnics and an annual mining banquet that provide opportunities for students and faculty to know each other better.