PENTICTON - Facilities at Okanagan College are being upgraded and modernized, thanks to over $570,000 in capital funding that is part of government's investment in public post-secondary infrastructure this year.
The upgrades will ensure campus infrastructure and operational systems are performing at optimum levels.
The college and government also announced today how more than $550,000 in one-time funding - http://bit.ly/HZ4EEn - will be used to offer skilled trades-related training in the region. The college expects to create 110 seats over the coming year, including training in mining, oil and gas-related supervision and safety, and green building design, among others.
B.C. taxpayers are providing over $45 million for Okanagan College's operations and infrastructure this year, up from $27.6 million in 2005/06. The number of funded student spaces at the college has increased 21 per cent over that time.
Over $34 million in capital investments have been made at Okanagan College since 2005, including construction of the Jim Pattison Centre of Excellence in Sustainable Building Technologies and Renewable Energy Conservation at the Penticton campus, and renovation and expansion of the trades facility at the Salmon Arm campus.
Naomi Yamamoto, Minister of Advanced Education -
"We are focused on ensuring our post-secondary infrastructure retains its value and capacity for generations to come, along with providing the tools, programs and services for our economy to flourish and grow. This capital funding and short-term training funding we've announced will ensure our students have access to the high-quality learning facilities they expect and the training opportunities the workforce demands."
Steve Thomson, MLA for Kelowna-Mission -
"Over the last 10 years, we've made investments like this to build a well-educated and trained workforce. Institutions like Okanagan College ensure British Columbians have the tools they need to get the jobs they want."
Bill Barisoff, MLA for Penticton -
"It is important to support Okanagan College because it's become a vital part of the Okanagan, providing opportunities to learn and upgrade skills for interested students close to home."
Jim Hamilton, president, Okanagan College -
"As the demand for skilled workers increases throughout our region, the provincial government's investment in improving our facilities and funding additional opportunities for skills training will have a significant impact on our students and the communities we serve."
Funding for B.C. post-secondary institutions:
- $23.7 billion - amount of money invested in post-secondary education in B.C. since 2001.
- 57 per cent - the increase in total operating funding since 2001 across the university sector, along with a 26 per cent increase in total operating funding for the college and institute sector since 2001.
- $1.9 billion - the amount invested in support of post-secondary education this year.
- $10,090 - amount per full-time student funded by the provincial government, up from $8,000 in 2001-02.
BC Jobs Plan: http://www.bcjobsplan.ca/
Connect with the Province of B.C. at: www.gov.bc.ca/connect