March 1, 2016

Kootenay Association for Science and Technology (KAST) awarded $25,000 Southern Interior Development Initiative Trust Grant

Since 1998, the Kootenay Association for Science & Technology (KAST) has worked to foster a culture that values science, technology, innovation and entrepreneurship as vital to the West Kootenay & Boundary region’s economic diversity/ competitiveness. A non-profit, KAST offers business development services, including coaching, expertise, training, and development projects to stimulate the growth of applied science and technology entrepreneurship.

KAST is establishing a centre for Metallurgical Industrial Development Acceleration and Studies (MIDAS) in Trail, B.C. This sector-targeted applied research and commercialization centre will provide technical training in metallurgical science and digital fabrication, a digital fabrication laboratory, and business development support for the region. MIDAS will support applied research and development of commercial applications and offer business mentoring.

"The MIDAS training program and equipment installation will result in the creation of one direct permanent full-time job and three direct part-time jobs with the indirect benefit of high quality rural jobs created and increasing metallurgical sector revenue, research and diversity in BC," states Grace McGregor, SIDIT Chair.

Amber Hayes, MIDAS Project Director at the Kootenay Association for Science & Technology says, "We are grateful to SIDIT for their early support of MIDAS. In our region, with our metals expertise, MIDAS will enable us to use materials in new and novel ways that will provide us with a competitive advantage."

The MIDAS lab is currently under construction, with specialized equipment training opportunities available. MIDAS will welcome the public in September 2016. To follow the development of the lab and learn more about the technologies, "like" the MIDAS Facebook page at

For more information contact:

Amber Hayes, MIDAS Project Director
Kootenay Association for Science & Technology

About the Southern Interior Development Initiative Trust
The Southern Interior Development Initiative Trust was created by an Act of the BC Legislature in 2006. SIDIT received a one-time allocation of $50 million designated for strategic investments in sustainable economic development initiatives throughout the southern interior of British Columbia. The Southern Interior Development Initiative Trust Act mandates investment in ten areas of the economy. These areas include Energy, Forestry, Mining, Olympic Opportunities, Agriculture, Transportation, Small Business, Tourism, Pine Beetle Recovery, and Economic Development. SIDIT is managed by an independent Board of Directors comprised of thirteen members - eight elected officials and five provincial appointees from the SIDIT Region. SIDIT is focused on supporting economic development initiatives that will demonstrate long term measurable economic impact within the Southern Interior.

A full overview of SIDIT can be found at
For further information contact:
Luanne Chore, CEO
Southern Interior Development Initiative Trust

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