Last week’s federal budget promises to reinforce the work Red River College is doing to provide more opportunities for future students and faculty, says RRC President Stephanie Forsyth.
Overall, RRC welcomes the collaborative approach outlined in the budget, which envisions two levels of government, post-secondary education institutions, labour and industry working together to help address the Canadian skills shortage. Both the Association of Community Colleges of Canada (ACCC) and Polytechnics Canada have also welcomed these announcements, particularly because they’ve been advocating for this type of investment and focus in skills development.
One of the highlights of the budget was a proposed Canada Job Grant, a $500-million investment in 2014-15 to connect employers with prospective employees and invest in their education. Early information suggests a potential student could be eligible for a $15,000 grant paid for with equal contributions from employers and the federal and provincial governments.
As Forsyth points out, many programs at RRC have a waiting list ratio of up to four students for every one currently attending. At first glimpse, the Canada Jobs Grant would help train more students, though collaboration from all parties would be required.
“This proposed grant is dependent upon all three parties bringing money to the table, so it is far from certainty,” she said last week. “Working closely with industry, the private sector and community organizations is a particular strength of RRC. If this collaborative model comes to pass, it will hopefully help us leverage this strength to engage more students and meet the needs of industry.” Read More →
Red River College President Stephanie Forsyth was among the leaders in education, industry and government who met last week to help ensure the province meets its target of adding 75,000 new workers to the labour market by 2020.
Forsyth and Kevin Rebeck, President of the Manitoba Federation of Labour, served as co-chairs of the summit, which was hosted by the Premier’s Economic Advisory Council, and attended by representatives from business, labour, and education and training.
Discussions were focused on five themes:
- Training more young people for the jobs of tomorrow;
- Connecting more Manitobans with trades training;
- Growing Manitoba’s successful immigration strategy;
- Building Manitoba’s First Nations, Metis and Inuit workforce; and
- Ensuring every Manitoban who faces barriers to working has access to training and employment
When the skills summit was announced last November as part of the provincial throne speech, it was roundly applauded as a good idea, in particular by employers who remain concerned not only about the ongoing skilled labour shortage, but also about finding the right skilled workers to fill positions. Read More →
This week, Red River College played host to a team of delegates from Xi’an Siyuan University (XSU) in China — one of a growing number of post-secondary institutions that have struck international partnerships with RRC in recent years.
The delegation was composed of the University’s Chairman Zhou, Yanbo; its Director of Human Resources Guan, Zhongmin; Director of International Development Shou, Shiheng; and RRC’s External Facilitator in China, Andrew Yang.
While here, the delegation met with RRC representatives to discuss joint programming opportunities in business, language training, and construction and engineering technologies.
Canada’s newest hospitality and culinary school opened its anchor restaurant today – Jane’s – the final piece in a 10-storey school where students learn, work and live in a facility modeled after the best European schools – all housed in a fully renovated historic building.
“From here we are going to attract people from around the world to Winnipeg,” said Red River College President Stephanie Forsyth as she opened the doors to Jane’s – the opulent 90-seat fine dining restaurant of the Paterson GlobalFoods Institute in the 1904 restored Union Bank Tower in downtown Winnipeg. “Learning and working in a space like this really inspires staff and students to do their best. The institute will attract and graduate the best hospitality people in Canada.”
“As the anchor restaurant, Jane’s provides the finishing touches to a school that the Canadian hospitality industry has been requesting for decades – a Canadian equivalent of the finest hotel and culinary schools in Europe. This is Canada’s answer. The Paterson GlobalFoods Institute combines culinary, baking and pastry arts, mixology and hospitality management with a student residence. At Jane’s, for example, the classroom is the restaurant. Students prepare and serve the meals in an open-concept kitchen, allowing guests to see the students and learn more about cooking while they dine,” Forsyth said.
Manitoba Premier Greg Selinger, who was among the first guests to walk through the facility, says Jane’s and Paterson GlobalFoods Institute will help meet the skilled labour shortage in Manitoba. The Manitoba government has contributed $5 million toward the school and restaurant.
“This new restaurant at Red River College is an innovative approach to helping meet the growing demand for skilled workers in Manitoba and we’re proud to support its creation,” said Selinger. “And for the 140 graduates every year who will have trained at Jane’s and the Paterson GlobalFoods Institute this means practical experience that will help them more quickly transition from school to a good job.” Read More →
Lt.-Col. B.S. Sandhu, President, Continental Group of Institutes, and Stephanie Forsyth, President and CEO of Red River College, sign a Memorandum of Understanding in Mohali, India.
Building on the success of its strong relationship with China, Red River College is actively recruiting in India this week and will sign deals with five educational institutions to bring hundreds of new students to Manitoba.
The enrolment of Indian students will increase opportunities for Manitoba students and help address Manitoba’s shortage of skilled labour. This year RRC has more than 150 students from China alone, and another 380 from several other countries, enrolled in three campuses. These successful models will be repeated to attract students from India with five-year agreements. After recruiting in India, RRC will target more international students working with sister campuses and educators in South America.
“Our India relationships benefit the college, the Province and India,” said RRC President and CEO Stephanie Forsyth from Delhi, India. “Foreign students, who pay the full cost of their education, allow us to develop even more programs and seats for Manitobans. Just as importantly, foreign students bring the global community to us. When they join our students and faculty on campus they help us all learn about their culture, and that helps us see how we can grow Manitoba and Canadian business abroad. India has a growing number of youth striving to achieve a strong post-secondary education, but the competition for limited spaces in India is strong. We provide educational opportunities in Canada that might otherwise be impossible to attain in India. The vast majority of these students have their sights on Canada as their future home.” Read More →
Red River College President Stephanie Forsyth addressed a packed house at an Aboriginal Chamber of Commerce luncheon this week, speaking on the topic of Aboriginal post-secondary education.
Forsyth discussed the College’s longstanding commitment to engaging and supporting Aboriginal students; shared some success stories about Aboriginal graduates who are making a difference in their communities; and outlined how the College plans to make Aboriginal student achievement a strategic priority by integrating traditional knowledge and practices throughout the organization.
The full text of President Forsyth’s speech is below.
Read More →
Brent Wennekes, Red River College
Accelerating innovation in Manitoba is Red River College’s motivation for appointing a technology- and research-focused business and communications specialist to the Innovate Manitoba team.
Brent Wennekes, Technology Transfer & Communications Manager with Applied Research & Commercialization at RRC will provide his skills three days per week to Innovate Manitoba as Research and Programs Manager.
“With its applied research program and reputation for graduating skilled individuals, Red River College is an important player in Manitoba’s innovation ecosystem,” said Jan Lederman, President of Innovate Manitoba. “Their provision of a highly-skilled programs manager to our team demonstrates a significant commitment towards accelerating innovation in Manitoba.”
Wennekes has experience in managing programs and research activities with a national not-for-profit advanced technology organization. With RRC, he has been supporting the growth of applied research programs in the areas of clean technology, advanced manufacturing, digital technology, and health sciences.
“Red River College plays a vital role in advancing innovation in Manitoba through its applied research endeavors,” said Stephanie Forsyth, President of Red River College. “And it’s no secret that Manitoba’s true strength is our ability to collaborate to get the job done. To that end, we are pleased to contribute a dynamic individual to support the growth and impact of Innovate Manitoba which will ultimately provide a net benefit to our Province.”
Along with contributing to Innovate Manitoba’s ongoing activities, Wennekes will be looking to help increase collaboration among existing community members, increase innovation funding and resources available to the community, and help execute a membership drive.
About Innovate Manitoba
Innovate Manitoba is a non-profit, province-wide organization with programs dedicated to linking researchers, inventors and entrepreneurs to the resources they need to succeed. It is an integrated hub for all innovation-related activities in Manitoba, focused on accelerating innovation and commercialization in the province. For more information, please contact: Jan Lederman at email@example.com, or call 204-934-2349.
About Red River College
Red River College is Manitoba’s second-largest post secondary institution with over 30,000 enrolments in full-time, part-time and apprenticeship programs each year. RRC is also one of Canada’s leading colleges in the area of applied research, with a particular focus on sustainable infrastructure, alternative energy vehicles, aerospace and manufacturing.
Manitoba’s construction trades sector is poised for growth thanks to a provincial government investment of $60 million toward development of a new Skilled Trades and Technology Centre at Red River College.
The commitment was confirmed in today’s Provincial Speech from the Throne.
“We know industry needs significantly more skilled workers to keep up with the growth of the Manitoba economy, but our aging infrastructure hampers our ability to respond adequately,” said Stephanie Forsyth, President of Red River College. “Today’s announcement lets us begin planning in earnest for a brand-new facility that features state-of-the-art industrial and learning technologies. We appreciate the government’s foresight in making this strategic investment.”
When completed, the centre will allow Red River College to create a central hub for all construction trades training at the Notre Dame Campus, enhance programming using new technology and collaborative work spaces, and expand capacity in high priority programs like carpentry, electrical and plumbing.
Forsyth also pledged RRC’s support for a planned Provincial Skills Summit, and noted that the government’s goal to expand Manitoba’s labour force by engaging more Aboriginal and international students is consistent with the College’s new strategic plan.
“I’m encouraged by the education and training priorities announced in the Throne Speech, and I look forward to working with our government, industry and community partners to bring them to life,” Forsyth said.
(From left): Fred Doern, Chair of Mechanical, Manufacturing & Communications at RRC; the Hon. Steven Fletcher, Minister of State (Transport); James Knight, President, Association of Canadian Community Colleges; MP Joyce Bateman (Winnipeg South Centre); the Hon. Gary Goodyear, Minister of State (Science and Technology); Stephanie Forsyth, President of RRC; and Dr. Suzanne Fortier, President, Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council.
The Honourable Gary Goodyear, Minister of State for Science and Technology, announced today that Red River College will receive almost $1.7 million through NSERC’s Community and College Innovation Program to establish the A2i2: Advanced Aerospace Innovation Initiative.
This new technology access centre will focus on making RRC’s facilities, technologies and expertise available to small and medium enterprises in the aerospace and manufacturing sectors.
“This technology access centre builds on the partnerships RRC has formed with companies like StandardAero and Magellan Aerospace to enhance innovation and productivity in these key industry sectors,” said Stephanie Forsyth, President of Red River College. “Ultimately, the research done through A2i2 will create new jobs and other economic opportunities right here in Manitoba.”
Over the past decade, Red River College and its partners have invested over $20 million in acquiring state-of-the-art technologies specializing in advanced materials and bonding, imaging and automation, and machine vision and simulation. The A2i2 initiative will bring these facilities under one umbrella, making it easier for industry to access equipment and College researchers.
Red River College is Manitoba’s second-largest post secondary institution with over 30,000 enrolments in full-time, part-time and apprenticeship programs each year. RRC is also one of Canada’s leading colleges in the area of applied research, with a particular focus on sustainable infrastructure, alternative energy vehicles, and aerospace manufacturing.