$18.9 million for new Health Sciences Centre at Okanagan College

MLA for Kelowna-Mission Steve Thomson, on behalf of the Advanced Education Minister Andrew Wilkinson, has announced $18.9 million for the construction of a new Health Sciences Centre at Okanagan College in Kelowna.

The new facility will ensure that Okanagan College continues to train students for health science careers that are in demand throughout the province.

The Province of B.C. will contribute $15.4 million and Okanagan College will contribute $3.5 million toward the construction of the new facility that will be located beside the existing Laboratory Building. The Laboratory Building currently accommodates the bachelor of science in nursing program, university transfer science programs and engineering technology programs.

The new 2,800 square-metre (30,000 square-foot) Health Sciences Centre will be an integrated learning centre that will include programs such as practical nursing, pharmacy technician, human service worker and early childhood education.

The new centre will allow Okanagan College to provide an additional 79 health and social development full-time equivalent student spaces to meet potential future demand.

The 2025 B.C. Labour Market Outlook forecasts more than 70,000 job openings in the health occupation group and more than 71,000 job openings in the natural and applied sciences and related occupation group over the next 10 years.

The Okanagan College project will create 71 jobs in construction and 47 jobs in supplier industries, including engineering and project management over the life of the project.

The project will help Okanagan College reduce its greenhouse carbon emissions and deferred maintenance costs. Construction is expected to get underway in summer 2018 with completion estimated for early 2020 and student occupancy in spring 2020.

The B.C. government is making record investments in modern, safe infrastructure projects throughout the province – and in doing so, these construction projects are creating well-paying, family-supporting jobs. These investments are possible because of the strong fiscal plan of the B.C. government.

Original news release from: BC Government News