Construction has started on Durham College's Whitby Campus Phase IV expansion. The project is designed to spotlight on skilled trades training, innovation and education. The Whitby campus has had a 130 per cent increase in student population over the past 10 years according to Durham College.ca.
"The college continuously hears from its partners that they need more skilled workers and would like new programs developed to focus on emerging industries. Yet in spite of our current efforts, the ability to keep up with the demand remains a challenge due to the physical space constraints at the Whitby campus."
Durham College President | Don Lovisa
Per Ontario Construction News, the timing of this new project could not be better considering the skilled labour shortage at the regional, provincial and national level. Colleges in Ontario forecast that by 2030, the province will face a skilled labour shortage of more than 500,000 workers.
Data from the last three years at the college shows that there were approximately 2,400 seats available yet the college received approximately 7,000 applications for these skilled trade programs.
Phase IV will result in a 60,000 square foot expansion and will allow Durham to increase its student intake in Whitby by 700 to 750 over three to five years.
By having more space, the college will be able to focus on high-priority industries such as Durham College's post-secondary Electrical Engineering Technician, Electrical Techniques, Mechanical Technician - Elevating Devices and Mechanical Techniques - Plumbing programs as well as the Electrician - Construction and Maintenance, Elevating Devices Mechanic and Plumber apprenticeship programs.
The expansion will include the following features:
- Double-height shop lab to address the needs of both the mechanical and construction programs
- Classrooms with moveable walls and furniture to accommodate various configurations
- Training labs with space and equipment for a range of post-secondary and apprenticeship programs
- Student touchdown spaces
- Fitness centre
- Food services facility
$1 million dollars over five years was contributed by the town of Whitby to support construction. A Building for Skills capital campaign will also be launched shortly to generate additional donations.
DataBid is currently reporting on this project - Durham College Whitby Skills Training Centre Site Coordinator (0008020420)
DataBid is currently reporting on this project - Durham College Oshawa/Whitby (0017050819)
Posted by Judy Lamelza