The applications for automation continue to expand within the mining industry. These applications can range from the startup, control, and shutdown of processing plants to the autonomous operation of surface haulage trucks. However, the term "automation" should not necessarily be interpreted as the total elimination of human interventions since numerous mining processes can be partially automated. The future survivability of many mining operations will be influenced by a company's willingness and ability to understand, accept, and utilize this technology. The mining workforce, including management and engineering, should be familiar with the technological capabilities and limitations for effectively implementing automation into mines for improving safety and productivity. The Department of Mining Engineering at the University of Kentucky has recognized this educational gap and developed an automation laboratory, along with project-oriented courses at the undergraduate and graduate levels. The laboratory and the course objectives are described in this paper, as well as the skills and abilities that students obtain at the completion of the course(s).