Campus News

Published by Communications and Public Affairs (519) 824-4120, Ext. 56982 or 53338

News Release

February 23, 2000

Government makes major capital funding announcement this week

The provincial government announced Tuesday an initial $330 million out of $660 million in new capital project funding for colleges and universities in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) to build and modernize infrastructure in preparation for the expected surge in student demand over the next 10 years.

As part of the GTA SuperBuild Growth Fund announcement, Minister of Finance Ernie Eves and Dianne Cunningham, Minister of Training, Colleges and Universities (MTCU), announced $28.63 million in funding to build a facility that will house a newly-proposed, fully integrated, joint admissions program involving Humber College and U of G.

Further specific SuperBuild Growth Fund announcements outside the Toronto area, including results of U of G's request for funding to construct the Sciences, Advanced Learning and Training (SALT) Centre, are expected later this week.

The funding announced Tuesday will permit construction of the Humber-Guelph Centre for Advanced Education and Training on the Humber College North Campus in Toronto, to be tentatively completed by fall 2003. The total capital project of about $40 million includes public- and private-sector support for land, equipment, technology support and student co-op opportunitities.

"We applaud the launch of SuperBuild and consider it an important step in the re-investment in the future of Ontario's students," said University of Guelph president Mordechai Rozanski.

Superbuild Growth Fund projects were chosen through a competitive process requiring institutions to demonstrate the benefits of their project against criteria including demonstrated student demand both for the institution and for the project's programs, as well as the project's long-term economic benefits to the community or region.

Humber College president Robert Gordon joined Rozanski in expressing delight at the news.

"This is a wonderful endorsement of our initiative," said Gordon and Rozanski. "The proposal to develop this joint program fits well with the Guelph and Humber tradition of balancing the theoretical and the applied and reflects our commitment to quality, innovation and accessibility. This pioneering partnership between Humber and Guelph would allow students to graduate in four years or less with a University of Guelph degree and a Humber diploma. With the joint admissions process and curriculum, this is truly "a third way" of obtaining a post-secondary education. Today's funding announcement permits us to move to the next stage of the governance process to realize this unique partnership between first-class institutions."

The Humber-Guelph Centre for Advanced Education and Training builds on a memorandum of understanding signed between the two institutions in June 1999 that will see the creation of a number of new integrated and applied degree and diploma programs. Programs identified for early development include:

-- wireless technology

-- police foundations

-- hospitality and tourism

-- media and communications

-- gerontology

-- early childhood education

"By providing the possibility for university-college attendance, this partnership will help meet the projected 40-per-cent increased demand for post-secondary places," said Alastair Summerlee, U of G associate vice-president (academic). "It will also enhance opportunities for accessibility for students in the GTA who may, for a variety of reasons, prefer to study in Toronto." Ultimately, the centre will accommodate a steady-state enrolment of up to 2,000 students between 2003 and 2008.

Gordon and Rozanski said the partnership was a success from the start because of the dedication, co-operation and initiative of teams of faculty at both institutions. They also acknowledged the project leadership at both institutions, including Richard Hook, vice-president (academic) at Humber; Ian Smith, Humber's associate principal, Lakeshore Campus; Guelph's provost Iain Campbell; Summerlee; and Guelph's Donna Woolcott, assistant vice-president (academic).

"We are gratified that the government has repeated its commitment that every willing and able student has access to post-secondary education," said Gordon and Rozanski. "We believe that the government well recognizes that the next critical step to achieve this goal is increased operating support and student assistance."

For media questions, contact Alex Wooley, Manager of Media Relations, (519) 824-4120, Ext. 6982.

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