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March 5, 2018

A closer look at Budget 2018 and what it means for colleges and institutes

With its third Budget, “Equality + Growth: A Strong Middle Class,” the Government of Canada is investing in building an equal, competitive, sustainable, and fair Canada – one where “science, curiosity, and innovation spur economic growth.” For Finance Minister Bill Morneau, investing in Growth, Progress, Reconciliation, Advancement, and Equality is the best way to ensure that every Canadian has a real and fair chance at success.

On college and institute campuses, Budget 2018’s commitments boil down to support for applied research and innovation, Indigenous education, and skills development for underrepresented groups. The college and institute mandate is deeply aligned with equality and growth for a strong middle class, and we can’t wait to watch the contributions of our members to a better Canada.

Here is a closer look at Budget 2018 as it relates to college and institute top priorities:

Applied Research and Innovation

  • The big-ticket Budget item for colleges and institutes this year is an investment of $140 million over five years to continue and grow the College and Community Innovation Program (CCI). Investment in CCI, new support for granting councils and the Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI), coupled with funding and program changes to the Industrial Research Assistance Program (IRAP) and to the regional development agencies will help fuel further growth of applied research in institutions across the country and generate new innovation partnerships that benefit businesses, students and their communities.

Skills Development for Underrepresented Groups

  • A new Pre-Apprenticeship Program and an Apprenticeship Incentive Grant for Women will encourage underrepresented groups – including women, Indigenous peoples, newcomers, and persons with disabilities – to explore careers in trades. As colleges and institutes excel in both trades programming and inclusion of underrepresented groups, we expect their expertise to be of vital importance in developing these initiatives.

Indigenous Education

  • Budget 2018 commits $2 billion over 5 years, and $408.2 million per year ongoing, to support the creation of a new Indigenous Skills and Employment Training Program which will replace the Aboriginal Skills and Employment Training Strategy (ASETS) to help Indigenous people develop the skills they need to find meaningful employment. As the primary access point to post-secondary education for Indigenous learners, colleges and institutes will have an important role to play in its implementation

As colleges and institutes are poised to play important leadership roles in each of these funded initiatives, Budget 2018 will go a long way to unleash their hidden potential. Read our Budget 2018 press release here.

Conference 2018: Early bird deadline is only 2 weeks away!

Conference 2018 is fast approaching – don’t miss your chance to register for early bird pricing! The deadline for early bird registration is March 15th – 10 days away!

Remember to also book your accommodations as soon as possible. Hotels will fill up quickly. Click here for information.

Mitacs “Accelerate” program now open to colleges and institutes

As announced at CICan’s Applied Research Symposium, Mitacs is pleased to extend eligibility for its Accelerate program to college and institute students across the country! After a year of advocacy, we are thrilled with this announcement.

The Accelerate program connects companies with postsecondary students to offer hands-on learning experience for students, while also helping businesses solve real-world challenges through student internship placements. Previously only available to university students, all college and institute students can now submit an application through Mitacs’ website.

For more information and to apply, click here.

Don’t miss CAAHP’s annual conference!

The Canadian Association of Allied Health Programs (CAAHP) will be holding its annual conference and AGM from May 2-3 in Victoria, BC, hosted by Camosun College.

With the theme “Allied in Learning: A Working Session of Exchange, Learning, and Information Sharing,” this year’s conference will tackle topics such as identifying the curricular needs of learners in allied health, with particular consideration for Indigenous educational needs and values; insights into new accreditation services for allied health programs; and items of interest in restorative justice regarding students. To register click here.

For those of you attending CICan’s 2018 Conference, also in Victoria, we invite you to extend your stay to attend the CAAHP conference and gain valuable insights into allied health programming. Register for CAAHP’s conference here.

CAAHP is an affiliation group for colleges and institutes across Canada offering programs of study in “allied health” fields, encompassing all professions in healthcare with the exception of Medicine and Nursing.

Webinar: Exploring Entrepreneurship Innovation in International Education

Major policy developments in Canada and internationally, such as the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), have identified entrepreneurship as a key element for facilitating decent work, stimulating sustainable economic growth, and achieving gender equality.

Join us for a thought-provoking webinar with Canadian college and institute experts on March 14 (English) and March 20 (French) to discuss innovative approaches to helping local partners stimulate business growth, making better use of Canadian expertise in entrepreneurship development, and improving women’s outcomes in technical and vocational education and training (TVET).

To register please email Pam Hedderson at by March 6 (English) or March 12 (French).

CICan and Scotiabank launch new international internship

CICan is proud to partner with Scotiabank to launch the joint Global Mobility Program, a brand-new pilot project designed to provide Canadian students with the opportunity to gain valuable international experience.

Thanks to the program, two students from CICan member institutions – Saskatchewan Polytechnic and Vancouver Island University – last month embarked on a 12-week fully funded internship with Scotiabank’s Digital Factory in Mexico City. The students, studying in the fields of Graphic Design and Front-End Software Development, will put the practical skills they learned in the classroom to effective use over the course of their internship, as well as attend a three-week intensive Spanish language and culture course offered by a partner institution in Mexico City.

CICan and Scotiabank are committed to building on this groundbreaking public-private partnership to explore opportunities for additional internships around the world. Read the full press release here.

2018 Canada-Brazil Outbound Student Mobility Program candidates selected

CICan is proud to announce that nine students from colleges and institutes across the country will benefit from a bursary of up to $5,000 to complete a 2-month cultural international experience in Brazil during the summer 2018 through the Canada-Brazil Outbound Student Mobility Program (CBSMB).

The successful candidates are from Capilano University, Cégep de l’Abitibi-Témiscamingue, Centennial College, College of New Caledonia, Douglas College, Medicine Hat College, Niagara College, North Island College and Selkirk College.

In preparation for their international experience, students will begin an on-line Portuguese course prior to departure for Brazil.  Students have been placed at Institutos Federais located in the five regions of the country where they will improve their Portuguese, learn the culture and participate in a work placement or research project.

The CBSMB was launched in November 2017 in collaboration with its partner the Conselho Nacional das Instituições da Rede Federal de Educação Profissional, Científica e Tecnológica (Conif) and provides scholarships for Canadian students looking to study in Brazil. Read more about the CBSMB here.

Eureka! Moment

Did you know that the College Entrepreneurship Education Project (Projet d’éducation entrepreneuriale au collège – PEEC) has 15 cegep members in Quebec and exists to coordinate the promotion and development of the entrepreneurial spirit among its members? The platform aims to document and share entrepreneurship best-practices, recognize and reflect on the successes of its members, and develop a forum for continued discussion on entrepreneurship! Visit PEEC’s website to learn more.


Congratulations to Nancy Déziel, Director General, Centre national en électrochimie et en technologies environnementales (CNETE) at Collège Shawinigan; Dr. Misheck Mwaba, Vice-President, Academic, Bow Valley College; and Tanya McDonald, Vice-President, Advancemenet, Olds College, who were all recently appointed to the governing council for the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC).


Conference 2018

Registration for CICan’s 2018 Conference is currently open. Click here for more information and to register.

Art Showcase

Submissions for CICan’s 2018 Art Showcase are open. Click here for more information and to submit.

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 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.