Students studying nursing, MRI diagnostics and other health-care roles will soon be learning in a new, innovative space, with the British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT) Health Sciences Centre set to open in September.
The new space will support students in 32 health-care programs, and will feature classrooms that enhance learning by simulating real health-care settings.
“The BCIT Health Sciences Centre has been designed to meet the needs of students today and for years to come,” said Anne Kang, Minister of Advanced Education and Skills Training. “We’re putting people first by increasing and improving the spaces and programs they need to advance their careers. We are making sure we are graduating well-trained nurses and care professionals who are ready to support the health-care needs of British Columbians.”
The centre will enhance the learning and study experience for BCIT's more than 6,000 part- and full-time health science students, including those pursuing careers in diagnostic medical imaging and medical laboratory science. It features simulations that replicate hospital, clinical and laboratory workflows, and includes living laboratories, simulation labs and multipurpose rooms.
“Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, health science professionals working in hospitals, acute care, long-term care and community health centres to provide every level of health care, including prevention, diagnosis, treatment and rehabilitation, have ensured that British Columbians have access to the quality care they need and deserve,” said Adrian Dix, Minister of Health. “The new BCIT Health Sciences Centre will provide the hands-on, real-work learning environments so that students can have the best training possible to provide the care people count on.”
The Province has invested $66.6 million into the $88.2-million project.
“As we have all experienced over the last number of years, health-care professionals are integral to the well-being of all British Columbians and a cornerstone for the economic and social well-being of our province,” said Kathy Kinloch, president, BCIT. “The new BCIT Health Sciences Centre is a critical investment in our ability to train, empower and deliver the graduates the province needs. Within these innovative teaching and learnings spaces, BCIT faculty and staff will train the next generation of specialty nurses, medical radiographers, nuclear medicine technologists and more with the hands-on skills they need.”
The four-storey, 10,355 square-metre (111,460 square feet), low carbon emission building, including parkade, is targeting WELL Gold certification, aligned with the Province’s CleanBC objectives of reducing commercial carbon footprints. The WELL certification dictates that owners and occupants can feel confident that their spaces are purpose-built to enhance human health and well-being.
In Budget 2021, the Province committed to invest $96 million over three years to support expanded post-secondary education and training capacity for the health workforce. The new space in BCIT supports the Province’s work to provide educational opportunities for students to enter the health system, including training and hiring health-care workers by expanding seats provincewide for allied health, nursing and health-care assistant training.
To learn more about the BCIT Health Sciences Centre, visit: https://www.bcit.ca/campus-plan/health-sciences-centre/
For more information about health-sciences programs at BCIT, visit: https://www.bcit.ca/path/health/
Two backgrounders follow.