The Government of British Columbia is aligning operating grants provided to public post-secondary institutions to support training for in-demand jobs, starting with $40 million in 2014-15 as outlined in the B.C.’s Skills for Jobs Blueprint.
“B.C. is shifting education and training to better align with in-demand occupations,” said Advanced Education Minister Andrew Wilkinson. “Aligning post-secondary funding to jobs in-demand will help students get the education and training needed for our economy.”
Previously, the B.C. government targeted about $190 million annually or 10% of provincial operating grants toward specific programs, primarily health-related. Funding for programs that support high-demand occupations will increase to 25% of annual operating grants provided to public post-secondary institutions, up to $460 million annually by 2017-18 as part of B.C.’s Blueprint.
The top 60 occupations listed in the B.C. 2022 Labour Market Outlook, as well as priority health occupations, regional labour priorities, Aboriginal people and people with disabilities are the focus of the shift in funding.
Select examples of how universities, colleges and institutes have aligned education and training to match labour market demand include:
- British Columbia Institute of Technology - power engineering
- Capilano University - business administration
- College of New Caledonia - community support worker
- North Island College - registered nursing
- Nicola Valley Institute of Technology - social work
- Royal Roads University - professional communication
- Simon Fraser University - computing science
- Thompson Rivers University - law
- The University of the Fraser Valley - construction electrician and carpentry
- The University of Victoria - computer science and engineering
“In a competitive global economy, universities like SFU are committed to providing students with the knowledge, skills and experiences they require to fulfill their potential in whatever field they choose, and equip them to respond to changing labour market trends,” said Simon Fraser University president and vice-chancellor Andrew Petter.
B.C.’s Skills for Jobs Blueprint outlines the plan to re-engineer education and training so that students and workers in British Columbia have the skills needed to fill the one million job openings anticipated in the province by 2022.
Government will target an additional $90 million in 2015-16 and 2016-17. Finally, government will target $50 million in 2017-18 to bring the additional targeted funding to $270 million, and to reach the total targeted funding of $460 million.
- In 2014-15, the $40 million of aligned funds represent 3,400 newly targeted student spaces for in-demand training and education.
- In 2014-15, more than 13,000 student spaces are targeted to education and training for high-priority occupations.
2022 Labour Market Outlook, including the top 60 in-demand jobs: http://ow.ly/EeSlV
B.C.’s Skills for Jobs Blueprint: http://ow.ly/EeSiW
Stacey McGaghey Jones
Government Communications and Public Engagement
Ministry of Advanced Education