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N.B, N.S. community colleges sign shipbuilding training alliance

Michel Doucet (left), executive director of continuing education for CCNB, and NSCC senior manager of customized learning Mike Kelloway sign a strategic alliance that will magnify the reach of the Marine Manufacturing Initiative training while NSCC Cumberland academic chair Andy Moore (back, left) and NSCC Cumberland training co-ordinator (business development) Anne Lawrence look on.
Michel Doucet (left), executive director of continuing education for CCNB, and NSCC senior manager of customized learning Mike Kelloway sign a strategic alliance that will magnify the reach of the Marine Manufacturing Initiative training while NSCC Cumberland academic chair Andy Moore (back, left) and NSCC Cumberland training co-ordinator (business development) Anne Lawrence look on.

AMHERST, N.S. – Community colleges in Nova Scotia and New Brunswick are coming together to prepare workers for the massive federal shipbuilding program planned for Halifax and for other projects related to the fishery.

Representatives from the Nova Scotia Community College and Collège Communautaire du Nouveau-Brunswick gathered in Amherst on Friday to sign a two-year strategic alliance that will magnify the reach of the Marine Manufacturing Initiative training.

Representatives from the Nova Scotia Community College and Collège Communautaire du Nouveau-Brunswick gathered in Amherst on Friday to sign a two-year strategic alliance that will magnify the reach of the Marine Manufacturing Initiative training.

The alliance also opens the door for CCNB to collaborate with its neighbour to deliver marine training within New Brunswick and Quebec.

“The National Shipbuilding Procurement strategy and the building of our patrol vessels are a big boon to Canada and the industry, the supply chain and educational institutions,” NSCC senior manager of customized learning Mike Kelloway said. “Both CCNB and NSCC see the inherent value in serving the needs of our communities through training and development and the opportunities around marinizing the trades for opportunities in the ship building and other businesses. But it has to be collaborated and co-ordinated.”

The curriculum was developed by NSCC, in partnership with Irving Shipbuilding Inc, to support the marine sector. The college worked with industry to design the program to fill the gap between skills that an experienced tradesperson would get and skills they may need in the marine industry with an emphasis on the marine manufacturing sector. 

This program was benchmarked internationally to understand how marine training is conducted in yards around the world. 

Kelloway said it’s important to market and advertise the program nationally as well. He’s also happy the curriculum has been translated into French.

“We’re very excited about an innovative program that has emerged from the hard work of industry, but also the school trades and technology at NSCC. They have created something very special and very unique,” he said. “It’s been a long road, but a good road and what like about it is that it’s a strategic alliance with teeth and it has vision and has action items.”

NSCC will work with CCNB to help identify expertise which will be offered within the MMI training in New Brunswick and Quebec through guidance from a committee to support the initiative on a national scale.

CCNB executive director Michel Doucet said the alliance comes at a critical time in New Brunswick’s economic history.

“New Brunswick has a rich history of boat building and a rich history in the fishing industry,” Doucet said. “The whole boat building trade is what New Brunswick’s economy is founded upon, especially in northern New Brunswick.”

Doucet said the alliance is timely because the boat building industry in New Brunswick is at a crossroads, adding the program will be anchored at the school of fisheries in Caraquet.

“This program allows us to benefit from NSCC’s expertise as we grow our own expertise in the area of composites,” he said. “We have a small boat building industry under way that uses composites.”

If all goes well, Doucet expects a strategic alliance to be signed with Quebec within the next few months.

MMI is a legacy program, funded through Irving Shipbuilding’s Value Proposition under the National Shipbuilding Procurement Strategy, which is designed to support legacy programs to help sustain and grow the marine sector in Canada.

darrell.cole@tc.tc

Twitter: @ADNdarrell

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