Canadian Manufacturing

Durham College announces new skilled trades and technology training facility

The 60,000-square-foot facility is home to numerous specialized labs and shops, which will allow DC to increase its industrial skilled trades training capacity in Whitby by 750 students.

April 22, 2022   by CM Staff

Durham College’s Centre for Skilled Trades and Technology grand opening

WHITBY — On April 21, Durham College (DC) welcomed donors, community partners, employees and guests to experience the grand opening of the Ontario Power Generation Centre for Skilled Trades and Technology (CSTT). Located at the Whitby campus, the 60,000-square-foot facility is home to numerous specialized labs and shops, which will allow DC to increase its industrial skilled trades training capacity in Whitby by 750 students.

Given the skilled labour shortage at the regional, provincial and national level, this project hopes to address Colleges Ontario statement forecasting that by 2030 the province will face a shortage of more than 500,000 workers in the skilled trades.

“This incredible new facility will help bring student success to life, creating opportunities to advance innovation and knowledge and providing a career launchpad for the next generation of skilled tradespeople,” said Don Lovisa, president, DC. “The generosity and support from our community is an investment in our collective success and our students’ futures, and core not only to the successful completion of this building but to the entire revitalization of the Whitby campus as we continue to lead the way in transformative education.”

Partnering with DC to help fund the expansion is Ontario Power Generation (OPG), whose name adorns the front of the CSTT.

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“Support from community partners like Ontario Power Generation makes an incredible difference at DC by helping to enhance our programs and facilities and providing access to industry expertise and experiential learning opportunities for our students to advance their skills,” said Linda Flynn, associate vice-president, Office of Development and Alumni Affairs and executive director, Durham College Foundation. “Seeing this building come together through the collaborative effort of so many is an incredible feeling, and we are proud of the role it plays in the success of our students and the Region.”

“This state-of-the-art facility is just the latest in Ontario Power Generations’ decades’-long partnership with Durham College,” said Subo Sinnathamby, senior vice president, Nuclear Refurbishment, OPG. “This partnership helps educate and train career-ready graduates to build a diverse population of potential employees for the energy sector in skilled trades and STEM. Now more than ever, we need skilled, talented and qualified graduates to support our current and future operational and project needs.”

In less than three years, the DC Building for Skills campaign has raised $9.5 million toward the $10 million in community support required to fully fund the $35 million project, which includes funding from the Region of Durham, the Town of Whitby and the Durham College Student Association (DCSA), in addition to donations and gifts from individuals, corporations and foundations. Fundraising activities continue in an effort to close the gap, with an aim to complete the campaign this spring.