Parkland College partners on agriculture project with University of Belize

Parkland College is pleased to announce that it has entered into a major educational partnership with the University of Belize – Central Farm Campus, Lakeland College (Lloydminster and Vermilion, AB), and Bow Valley College (Calgary, AB). The project seeks to solidify competency-based education training in Belize with a focus on sharing the colleges’ expertise on agriculture, entrepreneurship, and forming links with industry.

The three-year partnership in the Caribbean nation will officially launch on April 1, 2013. The project is being funded by the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) and the Association of Canadian Community Colleges (ACCC).

Parkland College will be a partner in the consortium to develop a new Associate Degree in Applied Agriculture to be delivered by the University of Belize. The project will work with university staff to improve instructional design techniques, employer-driven learning outcomes, as well as integrate entrepreneurship, environmental sustainability, and gender equity throughout the project.

“A key aspect of this project is revamping the University of Belize’s agricultural curriculum to support student transitions to employment,” said William Litchfield, Director of Advancement at Parkland College.  “In addition to curriculum support there will be significant time spent sharing best practices in academic advising, environmental stewardship, entrepreneurship, and attracting female students into non-traditional agricultural opportunities.”

Litchfield stated that Parkland College has a long history of working with local communities to support economic growth through education. The College will share its best practices with its partners to support the University of Belize’s growth and development.

The ACCC’s International Partnerships program offers opportunities for members, like Parkland College, to establish connections with institutions in developing countries. Through these partnerships, Canadian institutions share experience in educational programs tailored to applied learning and meeting community labour market challenges.

“This is a great opportunity for Parkland College,” Litchfield noted. “Lakeland College will lead the Canadian institutional partnership, and we are very excited to work with the University of Belize to further develop it as a premier educational provider in the Caribbean.” He added that Parkland College is assuming the lead role on gender mainstreaming strategies, developing training and materials for career guidance, and social marketing strategies and implementation.

The University of Belize has several campuses spread throughout the country. Its inland Central Farm Campus features a diverse mixed farm operation, providing students with hands-on training in livestock, field crops, and resource marketing. The partnership with the Canadian colleges aims to share information across the Caribbean to boost recruitment and promotion of agricultural programs.

“We look forward to working together with our partners on this project,” Litchfield said. “There’s a lot we can offer to make this partnership a success. But we’re also excited to be an active learner to better serve our students, communities and businesses in East Central Saskatchewan.”

 

About Us:
Since its inception in 1973, Parkland College has worked to expand the philosophy of life-long learning in East Central Saskatchewan. Among the seven basic principles upon which the community college system was founded is the idea that programs are to be developed in response to the needs of the community. Today, Parkland College offers a broad spectrum of educational services from trades training and high school upgrading to the province’s most diverse off-campus university offerings.

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For more information contact:
William Litchfield
Director of Advancement
Parkland College
Phone: 306.786.7331
Email: w.litchfield@parklandcollege.sk.ca

Training for tourism at Parkland College

Business is booming for hotels across much of Saskatchewan. Most inns are operating at or near capacity thanks to the thriving construction, mining, and tourism industries. New hotels are springing up with regularity, especially in Yorkton, Melville, and the boomtowns of East Central Saskatchewan.

But hotels and resorts don’t operate by themselves; they require workers, and that’s where Parkland College comes in. This spring, the next class of hospitality and tourism apprenticeship training begins at Parkland College. This successful program is a partnership with Labour Market Services (formerly Canada Saskatchewan Career and Employment Services).

The course is scheduled to run from April 15 to Oct. 4, 2013 in Melville. Students will receive training that can lead to careers as front desk agents, reservation sales agents, tourism visitor information counsellors, and housekeeping room attendants. Successful students will obtain certification in those positions through the Saskatchewan Tourism Education Council. They’ll also be able to continue on to achieve journeyperson status as a Guest Services Representative through the Saskatchewan Apprenticeship and Trade Certification Commission.

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For more information contact:
Brendan Wagner
Communications Officer
Parkland College
Phone: 306.728.6595
Email: b.wagner@parklandcollege.sk.ca

New Rail Conductor program coming to Parkland College

There will soon be another addition to the diverse program offerings available at Parkland College. The new Railway Conductor Certificate program will be offered this summer.

This certified pre-employment program from Red River College in Winnipeg is scheduled to begin in August. In just 12 weeks, students will gain the knowledge and skills needed to work for any of Canada’s 52 railways as a train crew member in either road or yard service.

Job opportunities are plentiful as veteran rail line employees head into retirement. Industry estimates suggest about 700 jobs will need to be filled in the next five years. The program’s combination of classroom theory and hands-on exercises on real rail lines and equipment prepares students for immediate work in the industry.

The Railway Conductor program integrates knowledge in safety, business, communications, and wellness with the management of trains, including switching and marshalling cars, copying authorities, transporting dangerous goods, performing inspections, and keeping records – all within the context of the Canadian Rail Operating Rules and railways General Operating Instructions.

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For more information contact:
Brendan Wagner
Communications Officer
Parkland College
Phone: 306.728.6595
Email: b.wagner@parklandcollege.sk.ca

Parkland College looking ahead to milestone year

Parkland College students have turned the page to 2013 and are back in class, ready to tackle what lies ahead. For many of them, January marks the start of the second term. There are over 500 full-time students at campuses in Yorkton, Melville, Esterhazy, Fort Qu’Appelle, and Canora. Another 1,600 people are registered part time, and some 3,900 are casual students enrolled in skills training and upgrading courses.

For the college itself, it’s a milestone year. The new year marks the 40th anniversary of Parkland College. Since its inception in 1973, the college has worked to expand the philosophy of life-long learning in East Central Saskatchewan. Among the seven basic principles upon which the community college system was founded is the idea that programs are to be developed in response to the needs of the community. Today, Parkland College offers a broad spectrum of educational services from trades training and high school upgrading to the province’s most diverse off-campus university offerings.

“We pride ourselves on delivering programs that offer variety and flexibility,” said President Dr. Fay Myers. “Our course offerings are adaptable to the demands of the region. We see that in the fact that our skilled trades programs are thriving right now.”

It should also be a big year for the Trades and Technology Centre. Myers notes fundraising is progressing well with over a dozen companies and community groups already on board. The college is optimistic that it will break ground on this much needed facility this year, with a grand opening set for 2014.

Parkland College heads into 2013 with a new strategic plan that provides strategic directions and priorities for the next three years and beyond. The mission for Parkland College is to act as a catalyst – changing lives, communities and industry one learner at a time. It is accompanied by a vision of prosperous indi­viduals, enterprises and economies driven by excellence at Parkland College.

“We wish to thank our partners – the many individuals, organizations and businesses with whom we have worked in recent years,” Myers said. “As a result of your support, we continue to address the training, advanced skills and education needs of the region and province.”

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For more information contact:
Brendan Wagner
Communications Officer
Parkland College
Phone: 306.728.6595
Email: b.wagner@parklandcollege.sk.ca

Parkland College launches 40th Anniversary celebrations

2013 is a milestone year for Parkland College as it marks the 40th Anniversary of the College’s opening. Over the years, Parkland College has grown from modest roots as a pilot project to become a diverse institution serving the education and training needs of adult learners and industry partners in East Central Saskatchewan.

“Parkland College has changed and grown and moved in different directions since its inception,” said President Dr. Fay Myers. “Currently we work a great deal with business and industry. With the growth of Saskatchewan and changing demographics, business and industry are requiring a great deal of skilled workers. That’s our focus right now and into the future.”

Parkland College’s origins stretch back to 1972 when the Saskatchewan government formed an Advisory Committee on Community Colleges. The committee produced a report which laid out seven principles for the college system, chief among them the colleges’ responsibility to promote adult learning and to develop programs in response to community concerns. On May 11, 1973, Parkland College’s administration office in Melville was established as a pilot program. It was the first to officially open with a ribbon cutting and blessing a month later by then Premier Allan Blakeney.

The Saskatchewan Community College Concept experiment worked so well that the Department of Continuing Education developed 15 colleges throughout the province within the first two years. Today there are seven regional colleges across Saskatchewan.

The province’s regional college model is a unique decentralized operation, flexible in staffing and resources and geared to quickly meet the educational demands of a community. Parkland College’s programming is constantly adapting to reflect the needs and character of the area.

Myers noted that numerous observances are being planned for 2013, including a special event in June to precisely mark the College’s official opening. A commemorative video featuring some of the College’s early developers has been produced to serve as an introduction to the 40th anniversary festivities. It can be viewed on Parkland College’s YouTube page at youtube.com/CollegeofChoice.

“We invite the community and the region to help us celebrate this very important occasion,” Myers added.

About Us:
Since its inception in 1973, Parkland College has worked to expand the philosophy of life-long learning in East Central Saskatchewan. Among the seven basic principles upon which the community college system was founded is the idea that programs are to be developed in response to the needs of the community. Today, Parkland College offers a broad spectrum of educational services from trades training and high school upgrading to the province’s most diverse off-campus university offerings.

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For more information contact:
Brendan Wagner
Communications Officer
Parkland College
Phone: 306.728.6595
Email: b.wagner@parklandcollege.sk.ca