Students in the province’s northeast have new and improved access to a state-of-the-art training facility at Northern Lights College (NLC) that is opening doors to good-paying, family-supporting careers in the skilled trades.
“Students, their families, local employers and community in the northeast are going to benefit from the new trades training centre in Dawson Creek,” said Melanie Mark, B.C.'s Minister of Advanced Education, Skills and Training. “The new facility that officially opens today means students can stay close to family and their community, without having to travel outside of the region. It’s also equipping those students with hands-on experience to begin their career and help us build the best B.C.”
The official opening of the new $34.4-million trades training facility took place with Mark, alongside students, faculty and staff.
The new trades training centre, which opened for classes in September 2018, is providing students with hands-on learning using industry-standard equipment to gain the tools and skills necessary for a career in the skilled trades. NLC offers several trades and apprenticeships programs, including aircraft maintenance engineering, electrician and power engineering. The new facility will house the carpenter, millwright (industrial mechanic), plumber, welding and wind-turbine maintenance programs.
The project includes construction of a 3,995 square-metre (43,000 square feet) trades facility that connects via an indoor walkway to the main building of the Dawson Creek campus. It replaces several old structures previously used by the college for trades training. The new building also provides physical capacity for up to 96 new full-time-equivalent spaces — a 33% increase. This will create better access for prospective trades students in NLC’s vast campus region across northern B.C.
$14.6 million in funding was provided through the Government of Canada’s Post-Secondary Institutions Strategic Investment Fund and $16.4 million was provided by the Province of British Columbia. The remaining $3.4 million was provided by NLC and donors.
Investments through the Post-Secondary Institutions Strategic Investment Fund are being used to modernize facilities at Canadian universities and colleges, as well as improve the energy efficiency of these facilities and reduce their impact on the environment.
Navdeep Bains, federal Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development –
“Modern learning spaces are key to helping students develop the skills they'll need for the jobs of today and tomorrow. Our government’s investment in the new trades training facility at Northern Lights College is another step forward in our plan to boost innovation and grow the Canadian economy.”
Bryn Kulmatycki, president and CEO, Northern Lights College –
“This new facility is a state-of-the-art learning centre that will provide training opportunities in skilled trades for residents of northeastern British Columbia. Northern Lights College is a training centre of choice that serves the needs of students and industry throughout our region and beyond for generations to come.”
Shelley Gray, interim chief executive officer, Industry Training Authority –
“We are pleased that the community of Dawson Creek has this new, modern trades training facility at their doorstep. Better training for apprentices and tradespeople will lead to greater job opportunities for graduates and highly skilled employees for industry.”
Dave Lye, vice-president of external affairs, Encana Corporation –
“This investment reflects our support of education and a sustainable energy industry through the development of trades training and careers in the oil and gas sector.”
Deanna Hoard, millwrighting student, Northern Lights College –
“We students have been blessed with this amazing building. It is an amazing tool for our future and for the future generations to come. It is an honour to be able to learn in a centre that has new tools and technology.”
- British Columbia has received $256 million through the Post-Secondary Institutions Strategic Investment Fund. Twenty public post-secondary institutions and one private First Nations institution in B.C. are benefiting from 30 individual projects throughout the province.
- Some of the equipment in the centre was also purchased with a portion of the $310,455 trades and tech funding disbursed by the provincial ministry at the end of Fiscal 2017-18.
Canada’s Innovation Agenda: http://www.ic.gc.ca/eic/site/062.nsf/eng/home
Post-Secondary Institutions Strategic Investment Fund: http://www.ic.gc.ca/eic/site/051.nsf/eng/home