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Sault College, Algoma U to share $10M provincial funding

Funding will help the institutions renew and modernize their facilities, says Romano
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Sault Ste. Marie MPP and Minister of Colleges and Universities Ross Romano announced today that the province is providing $10 million to Sault College and Algoma University for maintenance, infrastructure, upgrades and repairs.

The contribution "positions Algoma University to move forward with a range of much needed facility upgrades that support the first phase of implementation of the 2020 Sault Ste. Marie Campus Master Plan,” said Asima Vezina, president and vice-chancellor of Algoma University, in a news release issued today.

"This funding will help to transform our college and develop the new School of Engineering and allow us to train and educate learners in this dynamic, in-demand field strengthening our workforce for generations," said Sault College president Dr. Ron Common. "In addition to this, today’s investment will ensure our college campus is modern, safe, and up-to-date, so learners can continue to experience the exceptional learning environment we’ve so proudly fostered.”

Full text of the news release issued by the office of Ross Romano follows:

The Ontario government is investing over $10 million in Sault Ste. Marie’s Algoma University and Sault College. This funding is part of the Ontario government’s $486 million investment in capital funding to help colleges and universities across Ontario address their deferred maintenance backlog, undertake critical repairs, upgrades, and support the renewal of new infrastructure campus projects while providing students, faculty and staff with a modern and safe learning environment. The announcement was made today in Sault Ste. Marie by Ross Romano, Minister of Colleges and Universities.

“The first-class education students receive at our local postsecondary institutions is critical to our economy, and the future of our community,” said Minister Romano. “That is why I have committed to providing annual funding that will help our colleges and universities renew and modernize their facilities.”

As part of the Facilities Renewal Program (FRP), Algoma University and Sault College are receiving $1,508,300 and $1,751,600, respectively. This funding will continue for the next three years, through to 2022-2023. This is part of the province’s $466 million investment in capital funding to help colleges and universities across Ontario address the ongoing need for maintenance, repair, renovation and modernization of new and existing facilities. The 2020-21 FRP funding for Algoma University and Sault College represents an increase of more than $2.5 million over and above last year.

As part of the Colleges Equipment and Renewal Fund (CERF), the government is also providing Sault College $406,400. This is part of the province’s $20 million investment in capital funding to help Ontario colleges purchase and renew instructional equipment and learning resources. For 2020-21, CERF funding is also being used to purchase equipment to support student virtual learning during COVID-19.

“Over $10 million towards the maintenance and building of existing and new infrastructure projects at Algoma University and Sault College is a tremendous boost for Sault Ste. Marie as we actively seek out economic recovery stimulus projects. By investing in postsecondary infrastructure, we are supporting economic recovery, creating jobs and ensuring students obtain the skills they need for the in-demand jobs of today and tomorrow,” said Minister Romano. “And by investing in our students and their futures, we are ensuring that our youth remain ‘Home to Stay’, where we and they all want to be.”

“The funding announced by the Minister today positions Algoma University to move forward with a range of much needed facility upgrades that support the first phase of implementation of the 2020 Sault Ste. Marie Campus Master Plan,” shared Asima Vezina, president and vice-chancellor of Algoma University. “From the replacement of an ageing elevator to technology enhancements and other modernization upgrades to existing classrooms and academic spaces, the work made possible through the generous support of the Ministry of Colleges and Universities will ultimately improve accessibility, enhance the overall student experience, and decrease the carbon footprint of our campus. All of these efforts contribute to the economic recovery and development of a highly-skilled workforce needed within the Province.”

“This investment is creating amazing opportunities for Sault College. As Minister Romano announced in September, Sault College, in partnership with Humber College, will embark on the delivery of a Bachelor of Engineering - Mechatronics degree right here in Sault Ste. Marie and this funding is critical to making our vision a reality,” said Dr. Ron Common, president of Sault College. “This funding will help to transform our college and develop the new School of Engineering and allow us to train and educate learners in this dynamic, in-demand field strengthening our workforce for generations. In addition to this, today’s investment will ensure our college campus is modern, safe, and up-to-date, so learners can continue to experience the exceptional learning environment we’ve so proudly fostered.”  

Quick facts:
    •    Established in 1986, the FRP provides annual funding to assist universities and colleges with renewing and modernizing their campuses through the repair, renovation and alteration of existing facilities.
    •    Colleges and universities can use funds from the FRP towards projects that support the renewal and modernization of campuses. This includes major building systems upgrades, roof repairs, heating and ventilating system upgrades, and mechanical and electrical system upgrades.
    •    Established in 2002, the CERF provides annual funding to help publicly-assisted colleges acquire and renew instructional equipment and learning resources.
    •    Colleges can use funding from the CERF towards the purchase of a variety of hands-on equipment and materials, such as specialized equipment or machinery for use in labs and classrooms, and tools for use in shops. For 2020-21, colleges can also use funding to purchase equipment that supports virtual learning.