By JESSICA MARTIN
Conestoga College is partnering with the Wilfrid Laurier University campus in Brantford to offer more options to students.
John Tibbits, president of the college, said there are already some partnerships with the Laurier campus “up the street in the science area,” but the college is going to start programming at the Brantford campus as well.
“The vision is that we can have a completely integrated post-secondary system where students can come and have a variety of options,” he said at the college’s board of governors meeting on Feb. 27. “The options could include the trades, upgrading or switching between programs and schools. I think this is going to be a unique opportunity.”
There will be two Conestoga programs at the Brantford campus to start off with. One will be a post-diploma/post-degree human resource management program that is one year and allows a Laurier student in a four-year degree program to count it toward one of their years. The college already has an agreement with Laurier on this program and it is offered at the college, however, starting in the fall it will be offered in Brantford as well.
The second program to be offered in Brantford will be a two-year general business program which will serve in a multi-dimensional format and could be an entry level program to a Laurier degree.
“It’s a minor start, but there’s a market and we wanted to make a commitment,” said Tibbits. “Brantford is the fastest growing city in Ontario at this point and I think this is a wonderful experience for us.”
He said he hopes to have more of Conestoga’s programs starting up in Brantford a couple of years down the road, as long as the growth funding formula can support the plan.
“That’s another issue in itself, but from a strategic point of view, the partnership makes sense,” he said. “And it only takes 25 minutes to get from my office to that campus. It’s very close.”