New training equipment coming to College of the Rockies

The College of the Rockies is receiving $843,000 toward the purchase of new training equipment, including two L3 Mobile Truck Driving Training simulators and health care training mannequins.

Advanced Education Minister Andrew Wilkinson announced the funding during a visit at the College of the Rockies.

“Our government is giving students access to training equipment so that they have the skills that employers want,” said Advanced Education Minister Andrew Wilkinson. “More than $4 million in new trades and health care equipment is an investment which will prepare students for careers in a range of sectors that support economic prosperity.”

The $843,000 for the College of the Rockies is part of more than $4 million from the provincial government to a total of 20 public post-secondary institutions for the purchase of new training equipment.

“The College of the Rockies does exceptional work in helping prepare students for career opportunities in our region and throughout B.C.,” Kootenay East MLA Bill Bennett said. “That is why our government is investing more than $800,000 to purchase new industry-standard training equipment for the college.”

Equipment is for programs that prepare students for in-demand occupations, including truck driving, the trades and nursing.

“This funding is timely and appreciated,” said College of the Rockies president and CEO David Walls. “New equipment provides the college with the opportunity to help students get the necessary experience and skills to begin their careers in high-demand fields. These new equipment items add to our already considerable expertise of incorporating simulation into the student learning experience.”

The Ministry of Advanced Education is targeting funding and programs to sectors that have a high-demand for skilled workers. The more than $4 million will support students entering high-demand sectors such as health, trades and transportation. The B.C. Labour Market Outlook 2024 estimates 15,500 job openings for transport truck drivers.

“Truck driving is a skilled occupation that requires a strong training foundation,” said BC Trucking Association president and CEO Louise Yako. “We are extremely pleased the ministry is supporting both the trucking industry and the College of the Rockies in funding state-of-the-art equipment for trainees to help seat our trucks.”

With this $4 million investment announced today, government has provided more than $21 million toward the purchase of new training equipment for public post-secondary institutions since the launch of B.C.’s Skills for Jobs Blueprint in 2014.