LETHBRIDGE- It’s a $65 million dollar project years in the making, with the ultimate goal of putting that money right back into the community.
Trades are in constant demand in southern Alberta, and Lethbridge College is rising to the occasion with the groundbreaking of its new trades facility.
“The college, having gone there myself, has really prepared me well for what I’ve done but I know that there’s a huge space demand,” said Tim Bouwsema, service manager at Subway Automotive Services. “I personally never got a locker.”
For some lucky Lethbridge College students, space will no longer be a problem by 2017. The Trades and Technologies Renewal and Innovation Project, TTRIP, will boast over 15,000 square meters of classroom space.
“What we really do is try and align the number of students we have with the demand for the region, and so as that demand increases, we’re now able to meet that need,” said LC president Paula Burns.
It’s all about supply and demand, except that in Alberta, supply just can’t keep up.
“Demand will grow from year to year. Even with the college breaking ground immediately, they’ll require workers to help build the building,” said Dave Kunst of Selection People Solutions.
Even with hundreds of skilled graduates entering the workforce every year, there are many more unfilled jobs seeking trained hands.
Though many are willing to jump into the growing industry, for employers it’s training that counts, and the college hopes that’s where their graduates will shine.
The facility will help train about 2,300 students a year, nearly tripling its current intake.