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Canada’s Colleges Seek Budget 2014 Investments For Applied Research

In its submission to the Government of Canada’s 2014 Budget process, the Association of Canadian Community Colleges (ACCC) remains focused on Canada’s skills gap, the need to provide Canadians with the advanced skills employers’ seek and the need for enhanced workplace innovation.

“Colleges and institutes support economic growth and prosperity by producing highly skilled graduates and improving the productivity of businesses,” said Denise Amyot, ACCC President and CEO.

ACCC’s submission recommends investments for priority solutions in three areas:

Education and Skills Training: Increase access to post-secondary education for vulnerable Canadians, including Aboriginal peoples, disadvantaged youth, and persons with disabilities; improve inter-jurisdictional mobility and completion grants for apprentices; support immigrant integration programs and services; and increase international mobility opportunities for Canadian college and institute students.

Infrastructure: Establish a College/Institute Equipment and Deferred Maintenance Fund to ensure institutions have current and relevant instructional equipment and adequate facilities to meet the demands of the workplace.

Innovation and Commercialization: Support college/institute research partnerships with industry and community partners through: additional college-based Technology Access Centres (TACs) under the Tri-Council College and Community Innovation Program (CCI); inclusion of community organizations as eligible CCI partners; funding for all regional economic development agencies for college/institute research programs to address local needs; and applied research awards for students in college/institute programs.

Federal investments would improve access to post-secondary education, ensure Canadians participate fully in our economy and increase productivity and innovation in industry, particularly in small- and medium-sized enterprises.

ACCC is the national and international voice of Canada’s publicly-funded colleges, institutes and polytechnics, serving 1.5 million learners of all ages and backgrounds at campuses in 1,000 urban, rural and remote communities.