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Colleges seek reforms to help more students combine college and university


(Aug. 7, 2013) – Ontario’s colleges and students groups are urging the provincial government to help more students pursue a mix of college and university education byrequiring institutions to be more transparent about recognizing students’ prior credits.

“More students need access to career-focused programs as part of their post-secondary education,” said Glenn Vollebregt, President and CEO, St. Lawrence College. “Measures to help more students pursue a mix of both college and university will produce a more highly skilled workforce.”

The province’s 24 colleges and student groups such as the College Student Alliance are calling for measures to require colleges and universities in Ontario to be more open about the completed credits they will recognize when a post-secondary student transfers to their institution. Each institution’s credit-transfer policies should  be publicly available and easily accessible.

College presidents representing the sector will discuss the proposal in detail with Training, Colleges and Universities Minister Brad Duguid at an Aug. 7 meeting at Queen’s Park. Greater transparency will give college and university students looking to transfer to another institution a better understanding of how quickly they will graduate. This will help students make decisions that allow them to enter the workforce more quickly.

“More information and resources on credit transfer will help to reduce the number of courses a student will have to repeat once they have transferred from one institution to another,” said Curtis Bell, the President of the College Student Alliance. “This change will encourage more students to pursue a mix of both college and university in the future.”

Encouraging more students to pursue college programs as part of their post-secondary education will produce a more highly skilled workforce. This is important as Ontario works to address the skills mismatch that is hurting the economy. The skills mismatch is the divide between the skills and credentials held by people looking for work and the qualifications sought by employers. In a recent report, the Conference Board of Canada said the skills gap is costing Ontario more than $24 billion a year in lost economic activity. The report also found the province loses about $3.7 billion a year in potential tax revenues.

Many students are already recognizing the benefits of combining college and university. Over the past five years, the number of university graduates applying to college has increased more than 40 per cent.

“Post-secondary education in Ontario must place a greater emphasis on providing students with the qualifications they need to find meaningful work,” said Vollebregt.“We look forward to working with the government to improve the province’s credit-transfer system.”


About St. Lawrence College

Located along the shores of the St. Lawrence River, SLC has three campuses in Brockville, Cornwall and Kingston. St. Lawrence College boasts 6,500 full-time students from Canada, and more than 40 countries worldwide. Our college community includes 20,000 part-time students, 1,000 staff, and more than 70,000 alumni. We also serve more than 3,000 Employment Services clients annually. The college has recently invested in the development of Applied Research with many exciting projects in progress. In addition, recent revitalization project on our campuses support new and innovative programs and student needs.  We have over 85 full-time programs with the following new programs being launched; Health Care Administrator, Interactive Marketing Communications, Logistics and Supply Chain Management, and more. Our recent Solar PV installation on our Brockville and Cornwall campuses is one of the largest for a post-secondary institution, generating over $200,000. annually for the College, and it is a part of our extensive sustainability efforts.

For more information:

Laura Tulchinsky
St. Lawrence College, Communications

613-544-5400, ext. 1291