A land of opportunity
Immigration has long been one of the pillars of Canada’s strategy to diversify and grow its economy. The government’s #ImmigrationMatters campaign highlights its advantages, chief among which are contributing to the economy and creating jobs for Canadians, supporting an aging population, and filling labour-market needs. It’s no surprise, though, that due to unforeseen circumstances of the past year, 2020 saw a record drop in immigration to Canada: after border restrictions took effect in April, Canada’s population saw its lowest growth in a first quarter since 2015.
In October, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, Marco Mendicino tabled the government’s 2021‒2023 Immigration Levels Plan, which sets out a path for responsible increases to immigration targets to help the Canadian economy recover from COVID-19, drive future growth, and create jobs for middle-class Canadians.
With over 95% of Canadians living within 50km of their local college or institute, many of those newly arrived in Canada can benefit from specialized language-training, skills upgrading, bridging programs, and special services offered by colleges and institutes to strengthen their potential for success:
- Humber College offers specialized short-term training programs to help newcomers upgrade their skills and connect with hiring employers, including bridging programs such as the .NET Developer Program (for information technologies), the Supply Chain Bridging Program, and the Engineering Bridging Program.
- The School of Immigrant and Transitional Education at George Brown College offers specialized programs and services that help immigrants prepare for next steps to employment or further education. The college’s Mentoring Partnership also connects students who are recent immigrants with a Mentor in their field.
- The four-week Automotive Installer course at Nova Scotia Community College is a fast, customized training program for new Canadians designed in collaboration the Immigrant Services Association of Nova Scotia.
- The new Ready to Teach program at SAIT is designed to create a skills bridge for internationally educated post-secondary educators who wish to continue to their teaching careers in Canada in just eight weeks.
- The Newcomer Booster is a two-week program that prepares international and newcomer students to start their studies at NAIT: students engage with self-paced online learning materials, build on their learning in facilitated online sessions, and engage in community building through peer and staff interactions.
- Designed as part of the joint Refugee Employment Development Initiative, the Manufacturing Production Worker Program at the Manitoba Institute of Trades and Technology helps newcomers in Winnipeg improve their English language skills and provides them with a pathway into employment.
- Just last month, College of the North Atlantic received funding to establish an Economic Immigration Ideas Lab that brings together leaders in communities, business, labour and post-secondary education to incubate new approaches to recruit and retain immigrants to the province.
- At Collège Boréal, new immigrants to Canada can take advantage of specialized language training in both English and French with the Language Instruction for Newcomers to Canada (LINC), and Occupation-Specific Language Training (OSLT) programs.
- The French for new immigrants program at Collège Montmorency provides language training as well as an introduction to the unique history, geography, economy, and social and cultural lives of their new host communities.
- And, in partnership with the regional municipalities of Sources and Val Saint-François, Cégep de Sherbrooke has been working to facilitate work and study placements that encourage international students in high-demand fields like industrial technologies to stay and work in the region after graduating!
When newcomers are given the tools to succeed, all of Canada benefits. In the context of the pandemic, newcomers to Canada – including those who came to Canada as international students – will be especially important to kickstarting recovery efforts and meeting current and future labour-force needs across the country.
- Ahead of the federal government’s next budget, we recommended investing $75M over three years to maintain Canada’s competitive position as an international study destination and facilitate student transitions to the labour market and citizenship.
- Our white paper, COVID-19 and Beyond, also highlights how Canada can leverage the full capacity of colleges and institutes to build a recovery-ready workforce, drive innovation, and support sustainability.
- Le Collège Boréal lance une première formation sur mesure en entretien de véhicules électriques à batterie.
- Les cégeps de Montréal lancent 27 formations courtes pour aider les personnes sans emploi
- Loyalist College will begin offering Level One and Level Two Mechatronics Systems certifications beginning this fall.
Perspectives LIVE: “Amplifying BIPOC voices: representation, visibility, and opportunity”
As calls to action for social justice echo around the world, important conversations about race, racism, and barriers to success continue to be had at many levels across the country. In last week’s episode of Perspectives LIVE, we looked at the role of post-secondary institutions in addressing systemic racism in Canada and the steps that institutions can take to move from celebrating diversity to driving meaningful change?
Thank you to our fantastic speakers: Michael Bach, Elsa Mondésir Villefort, and Neil Price; our co-hosts: Bow Valley College president Misheck Mwaba and Andrew Beattie; and our sponsor: the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs. Follow us on YouTube to watch all our previous episodes.
On February 24, we’re taking another look at amplifying BIPOC voices with our next French-language episode: « Amplifier les voix BIPOC : représentation, visibilité et opportunité ». Register for free and add it to your calendars!
Must read: CICan Board of Directors endorses Future Skills Council report
As leaders in Canada’s post-secondary education sector, our board of directors, last week, formally welcomed the priorities identified in the final report of the Future Skills Council: Canada – A Learning Nation, which the directors called “a valuable roadmap in response to disruptive technological, economic, social and environmental challenges.”
Read the full statement from our board of directors. Both CICan president and CEO Denise Amyot and Holland College president Sandy MacDonald sit on the council.
CICan is also committed to engaging members to help identify ways that colleges and institutes can act individually and collectively to move forward on the recommendations in the report. Ahead of the next federal budget, share your success stories on social media using the hashtag #YourBudget.
Learn about becoming a delivery partner for our new Supportive Care Assistant program
Join us next week to learn about a new program preparing workers for careers in supportive care, providing much needed support in long-term care and home care!
The new Supportive Care Assistant training program is fully subsidized by Employment and Social Development Canada that will address the acute labour shortages in the long-term and home care sector and will be delivered as part of our new Building Capacity in Long-Term Care project.
This information session is geared towards colleges and institutes interested in participating in this national initiative as program delivery partners! Join us on February 24 to learn more.
Advance awareness and adoption of the SDGs in a new global Affinity Group
In collaboration with the World Federation of Colleges and Polytechnics (WFCP) and UNESCO-UNEVOC, we invite you to join a new Affinity Group dedicated to embedding SDG principles in post-secondary institutions around the world!
Help advance the awareness and adoption of the SDGs as integral to TVET learning through knowledge exchange, bridging of experiences, and the creation of an engaged and diverse community of practice to ensure no one is left behind. The group will focus on SDG best practices, emerging research, policies, collaborative opportunities. Learn more about the SDG Affinity Group.
The inaugural meeting will take place on February 23 with guest speaker Charles A. Hopkins. Hopkins holds the UNESCO Chair in reorienting education towards sustainability in Toronto.
Reminder: support youth employability in Kenya with Young Africa Works
Two new opportunities are available two help strengthen technical and vocational education and training (TVET) in Kenya and give youth, particularly women, market-relevant skills to find fulfilling work through Young Africa Works-Kenya: Youth Employability through TVET with the Mastercard Foundation!
Help shape the future of digital research infrastructure in Canada.
The New Digital Research Infrastructure Organization (NDRIO) is seeking input from researchers across the country to help develop a strategic plan that will meet the specific needs of all researchers accessing digital infrastructure in Canada and ensure equitable and inclusive access to digital tools and services.
If you are a current and future researcher using digital research infrastructure, regardless of discipline, share your thoughts on topics including funding allocation, service provision, data collection, and knowledge mobilization. Respond to the national survey before February 22.
Did you know that the Canadian Centre for Diversity and Inclusion (CCDI) partners with organizations across Canada and offers resources, toolkits, webinars, and networking opportunities to help employers and human resources practitioners effectively address the full picture of diversity, equity and inclusion within the workplace? We recently became an Employer Partner! CICan values equity, diversity, and inclusion within the association and through its programs, and is on a journey to better align these principles with our strategic objectives. We invite our member institutions to join CCDI!
Yukon University welcomed Chùsi Robin Bradasch as associate vice president Indigenous Engagement and Partnerships. Bradasch joins Yukon U with 15 years of federal government experience with Crown and Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada based in Yukon.
Parkland College appointed Dana Wilkins as vice president of Partnerships and Business Development, effective February 1. Wilkins previously held senior executive leadership positions with the Ministry of Justice.
Stay safe and healthy on campus. Download the COVID Alert app.
Visit Wellness Together Canada for free online mental health and substance use support.
Send Us Your News
One of our main goals at Colleges and Institutes Canada is to champion and share the innovations and awesomeness of our members. You can help! We want to hear about your new applied research, industry and community partnerships, international education, important financial investments and more. Add firstname.lastname@example.org to your media mailing lists! We’ll share member institution News Releases and other upcoming announcements online and with our national media contacts based in Ottawa.