Okanagan College president Jim Hamilton speaking with trades student Dustin Vasil (right) at the Penticton campus after a funding announcement to purchase more than half a million dollars worth of new trades equipment.

Half million investment into Okanagan College Penticton trades

New industry-standard trades training equipment will be purchased in Penticton with the $565,000 in funding announced by the province.

An investment of more than half a million dollars for the Penticton campus of Okanagan College has an end goal of training and retaining skilled workers in the valley.

New industry-standard trades training equipment will be purchased in Penticton with the $565,000 in funding that was announced by the province on Thursday.

“Training Okanagan College students with job-ready skills means that employers in Penticton will be able to quickly and confidently fill the growing need for skilled tradespeople,” said Penticton MLA Dan Ashton, who attended the announcement at the Penticton campus. “This trades training equipment is vital for student success, both for classroom learning and as they embark on careers in the community.”

For refrigeration and air conditioning mechanic student Dustin Vasil, funding such as this is just another reason why he choose to attend the Penticton campus.

“This funding is a big deal. It gives us the highest-end equipment to work on and gives an edge,” said Vasil, who is originally from Kamloops. “I like Penticton, it is a nice city and this facility is amazing. It has top-notch equipment and tools.”

Keeping those looking to advance in their trade and further their schooling close to home is one of the benefits of this type of funding that was touted by the Minster of Advanced Education Andrew Wilkinson.

Read more: Trades expansion at Okanagan College

“We are very keen to make sure students have the ability to learn in their own communities and stay in their own communities. I think we all know the Okanagan is a growing area and we are very keen to have the young people in the Okanagan get trained and build up their lives here and run the businesses of the future,” said Wilkinson. “This is a great opportunity to train people who are going to earn a good living, right here in the Okanagan.”

Okanagan College president Jim Hamilton said the ability to purchase new equipment for their shops will benefit a range of programs, adding value to the learning experience for their students.

The funding will go towards the purchase of a natural gas oven for the refrigeration and air conditioning program. It will also benefit students in the automotive service, construction, heavy mechanic, plumber/pipefitter, sheet metal, welder and cook/baker programs.

The Ministry of Advanced Education has invested more than $2.3 million in trades-training equipment at Okanagan College through B.C.’s Skills for Jobs Blueprint and almost $2 million toward the $33-million Okanagan College Trades Renewal Project.

Nearly one million job openings are expected in B.C. over the next decade and eight out of 10 of these openings will require post-secondary education

“The Okanagan College does a remarkably good job all through the Okanagan from Salmon Arm, Sicamous right down to the border. We have campuses in a number locations and four regional deans because we are operating programs that are responsive to the communities and designed to make it attractive for the students to stay right there in their home town to get the training they need,” said Wilkinson. “Okanagan College does a really good job and has an excellent reputation.”

A total of 15 public post-secondary institutions throughout the province will benefit from the $6.1 million in funding announced on Thursday.

Read more: Donna Lomas retiring after decade as regional dean

 

 

Just Posted

Work continues to deal with flooding

Increased efforts to mitigate flooding at Sportsmens Bowl and downstream

Reel Reviews: Parlour games or video games

We say, “Rampage is silly fun and Truth or Dare is just silly”

Look back to simpler summers

Rotary honourees reminisce about South Okanagan summers

Okanagan-Similkameen freshet looms large: district

Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen says property owners have window to prepare for flooding

Final week for ALR input

Public consultation process closes April 30

REPLAY: B.C. this week in video

In case you missed it, here’s a look at replay-worthy highlights from across the province this week

Low fog creates stunning views near Sicamous

Motorists on the highway between Salmon Arm and Sicamous were treated to spectacular scenery.

Dix says B.C. remains focused on fighting youth overdoses in wake of teen’s death

Elliot Eurchuk’s parents say he died at his Oak Bay home after taking street drugs

‘When everybody leaves: Counselling key to help Humboldt move on after bus crash

Dealing with life after a tragedy can be the worst part following a loss

Half-naked shooter guns down four, runs away in Nashville Waffle House shooting

Nashville police say they are looking for Travis Reinking in connection with the shooting

Child’s body found in river downstream from where boy went missing during flood

Three-year-old Kaden Young was swept out of his mother’s arms in February

B.C. VIEWS: Eliminating efficiency for farm workers

Don’t worry, NDP says, the B.C. economy’s booming

Penticton students tackle dark themes in Oliver

Penticton Secondary School’s theatre program brings to the stage Oliver

Kamloops RCMP respond to report of dead body floating in Thompson River

Body has not been located, searches to continue as river conditions improve

Most Read