There is a lot happening at Canada’s polytechnics. Our blog offers perspectives on the exciting work underway on campuses and in Ottawa. Do you have a polytechnic story to tell? Share it with us!

Access tomorrow’s talent today

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, organizations in virtually every sector have needed to adapt and pivot, implementing new practices and technologies to support their sustainability and growth. This rapid change has accelerated challenges that Canadian companies were facing even before the pandemic, including the urgent need for workforce upskilling and the search for new talent with already acquired competencies. Here’s where Ontario’s colleges can help.

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Unprecedented employment disruption calls for a new approach to skills training

This year’s International Women’s Day is an opportunity to reflect on the disproportionate impact of COVID-19 on women and young workers.  Those from racialized groups and in low-paid positions have been disproportionately affected.  Between February and November 2020, 58,000 men joined the labour force, whereas 31,000 women left it. In an economic downturn that affected some sectors and occupations much more than others, the divide in the Canadian workforce has never been so stark.

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Now is the time to upskill and reskill

Upskilling and reskilling the workforce is widely understood as vital for the success of any post-pandemic economic recovery.

This fact is underscored in a recent report by the World Economic Forum (WEF) titled The Future of Jobs Report 2020.

The need to upskill and reskill was already evident before the rise of COVID-19.  The pandemic has only made this necessity more urgent.

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Best practices in Indigenous education and what it means for Canada’s recovery

Image provided by Fanshawe College – students learn traditional teachings and participate in ceremonies as part of the summer college and high school accelerator programs.

One of the many impacts of COVID-19 was to bring to light longstanding economic inequalities exacerbated over the past months.  As Canada looks ahead to pandemic recovery, we must do so with a renewed focus on Indigenous reconciliation.

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Getting back to sunny ways: The role of education in Canada’s new agenda

This week brought a buzz to Ottawa that was absent for most of the summer. On Wednesday afternoon, the Governor General delivered the Speech from the Throne, outlining the government’s agenda for the foreseeable future and formally opening the second session of the 43rd Parliament. A few hours later, the Prime Minister delivered a prime-time address to reiterate this plan and speak to the collective public health efforts required in the weeks and months to come. In the best of times, this would be a moment of excitement and new beginnings. But, of course, these are not those times.

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Back to school in a pandemic: A student perspective

The COVID-19 pandemic has created complex challenges across nearly every facet of society, students included. As the pandemic emerged through the spring and kept its grip into the summer, there has been no shortage of emotional and financial turbulence. In March, post-secondary students experienced the panic of packing up and storing their possessions at a moment’s notice when residences and campuses shut down. The summer has proven difficult for many financially; students who thought they had summer jobs had placements postponed or eliminated. As we look toward fall, the turbulence has yet to abate. 

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Virtual work-integrated learning: A student’s perspective

I have always understood the importance of hands-on learning. Growing up in southwestern Ontario’s Perth County – home to farmers, millwrights, nurses, plumbers and mechanics – my hockey team was organized by an electrician, an operating room nurse and a nursing home dietary manager. My parents were both healthcare professionals. What the people who worked in my neighbourhood had in common was an applied, hands-on education. A polytechnic education.

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Polytechnics key to climate agenda

Less than a year ago, thousands of protesters marched through the downtown Ottawa streets demanding climate action, while hundreds more watched through their office windows. Today, with offices empty and large gatherings restricted, the global pandemic has grabbed the headlines and our collective attention is focused elsewhere. It remains to be seen whether climate change will take a backseat to economic recovery and other urgencies of the day, as it has so many times before.

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