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New Tech Seats in Niche Programs Give Students More Choices

Students throughout British Columbia will have more opportunities to pursue good-paying jobs in B.C.'s booming tech industry, which will ensure the province's employers have access to more homegrown talent.

"There hasn't been any significant investment in tech programming for more than a decade," said Melanie Mark, Minister of Advanced Education, Skills and Training. "As part of our new tech-expansion plan, we're adding hundreds of tech seats in niche programs at public post-secondary institutions throughout the province. Opening the doors to more tech opportunities in B.C. means good-paying jobs for people in an innovative, sustainable and 21st-century industry."

The Province is investing an initial $900,000 to kick-start planning, development and implementation of 370 additional tech seats at nine public post-secondary institutions throughout British Columbia. These niche programs are relatively short in length, and generally involve more focused or specialized training.

The rollout of the additional 370 seats is expected to start in 2019-20, with full roll out in 2020-21.

New seats have been added to a range of programs. These include engineering certificates at Vancouver Island University, certificates in web application development at Selkirk College and master of design in interaction design degrees at Emily Carr University of Art and Design.

"Technology is at the heart of innovation in every industry, and is crucial for the future of B.C.'s strong, sustainable and prosperous economy," said Bruce Ralston, Minister of Jobs, Trade and Technology. "By adding tech seats in post-secondary institutions throughout B.C., we are helping B.C. companies fill the good jobs that are opening at an impressive pace across this thriving sector."

Under the tech-expansion plan, the Province is adding 2,900 tech-related spaces throughout B.C. to produce 1,000 additional tech-grads a year by 2023. This includes 370 tech spaces in niche programs.

"Every single one of these seats is good news for B.C.'s tech sector, as they each represent future employees who can accelerate the growth of our tech sector," said Jill Tipping, president and CEO of the BC Tech Association. "By proactively planning for a tech-centric future with these new learning spaces, we enable people to develop diverse skills and not only graduate, but thrive in high-paying, progressive jobs, all around British Columbia."

Over 83,400 tech-related jobs openings are expected by 2027, including jobs like computer programmers, engineers, information system analysts, digital design and software designers.

The tech sector in B.C. is one of the fastest growing sectors of the economy. It generates approximately $29 billion in revenue and supports over 106,000 good-paying jobs with more than 10,200 businesses.

In partnership with its Crown agency, the BC Innovation Council, the B.C. government is hosting the province's third #BCTECH Summit, May 14-16, 2018. It is the largest technology conference in Western Canada, showcasing cutting-edge innovation and the latest tech solutions. The summit will provide networking, investment and career opportunities in B.C.'s thriving tech sector. To register or learn more, go to: https://bctechsummit.ca

The Government of British Columbia is providing an initial $900,000 to kick-start planning, development and implementation of 370 additional niche tech seats at nine public post-secondary institutions.

  • Langara College: $100,000 to plan for 40 additional spaces in data analytics certificate and web technologies citation programs. The program expansion will be supported with annual funding of $400,000, once fully up and running in 2020-21.
  • North Island College: $100,000 to plan for 40 additional spaces in a new computer information systems certificate program. The program expansion will be supported with annual funding of $400,000, once fully up and running in 2020-21.
  • Selkirk College: $100,000 to plan for 40 additional student spaces in web application development certificate and digital fabrication and design diploma programs. The program expansion will be supported with annual funding of $400,000, once fully up and running in 2020-21.
  • Vancouver Community College: $100,000 to plan for 40 additional spaces in computer systems technology diploma. The program expansion will be supported with annual funding of $400,000, once fully up and running in 2020-21.

Original article from BC Government News