A strong college system is fundamental to a strong economy

Books and iPad

For everyone discovering this blog via Colleges Ontario’s new website, welcome to the site.

It’s one part of our commitment to delivering more news and information about Ontario’s colleges and their pivotal role in providing students of all ages with the professional expertise to pursue rewarding careers. In this new blog and throughout our website, we’ll be exploring key issues that are fundamental to Ontario’s long-term prosperity.

Throughout the province, the demand for college education is growing.

In part, that’s because we work closely with businesses and industries to ensure our programs are relevant and current.

Colleges offer a perfect blend of theoretical learning and specialized hands-on training. This ensures graduates have the right skills and problem-solving abilities to find meaningful careers and succeed in them.

This will be crucial in the years ahead as governments put greater emphasis on post-secondary graduates’ achievements. For example, the Ontario government is reshaping its funding of post-secondary education so that investment is tied more directly to performance.

It’s essential that governments at all levels and businesses work collaboratively with us to fill the growing labour gap and produce a stronger economy.

There are some tremendous opportunities ahead of us.

Ontario’s colleges are already at the forefront of the new economy, delivering leading-edge programs for a new world of work that’s being revolutionized by technological innovations. Through reforms that give us more autonomy to develop new programs and credentials, we can do even more.

To meet the growing pressures of an aging population, we can play a greater role in training nurses and other professionals for the health-care system.

As well, we will be central to the efforts to modernize apprenticeship training to help close the escalating skills gap in technology and the trades.

And of course there is more.

I genuinely believe this is an exciting time for Ontario’s colleges as well as our students and graduates. Be sure to check back regularly for updates and analysis of the major issues in post-secondary education today.

Linda Franklin

Linda Franklin is the past president and CEO of Colleges Ontario, the advocacy association for Ontario’s 24 colleges.