Atlantic Colleges Atlantique (ACA) signs MOU for online training collaboration
Halifax, March 26, 2018 – A three-year Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) aimed to improve online training opportunities for apprentices on the east coast has been signed among seven post-secondary public colleges in Atlantic Canada.
The MOU was ratified in February during the Atlantic Colleges Atlantique (ACA) meeting at Nova Scotia Community College (NSCC) in Halifax. The agreement is the foundation for which the ACA, formerly known as the Atlantic Provinces Community College Consortium (APCCC), will spearhead a collaborative relationship to share the use of existing online training, as well as develop additional online training and resources to expand curriculum.
This MOU will position public colleges in the region to support the Atlantic Apprenticeship Harmonization Project proceeding under the auspices of the Atlantic Apprenticeship Council and cost-shared with the federal government through the Foreign Credential Recognition Program and Employment Insurance Part II. The Council is comprised of the heads of the four provincial apprenticeship authorities and chairs of the respective Apprenticeship Boards. In response to industry demand, Atlantic apprenticeship harmonization aligns apprenticeship training requirements and system processes across the region to facilitate the mobility of apprentices, support an increase in certification rates and enable employers to more easily access the workforce they need.
“As educational institutions that aspire to deliver quality apprenticeship technical training on behalf of the provincial apprenticeship authorities, engaging in this co-ordinated effort to increase the availability of online training options across the region is a reflection of our commitment to the economic and social development of the Atlantic provinces,” said CNA President & CEO, Dr. William Radford, who is taking the lead role in the MOU. “As a consortium, we wish to support apprentices in their endeavours to achieve success such that their online experiences while pursuing apprenticeship training are positive wherever they live in the region.”
This ability to avail of online harmonized apprenticeship training in Atlantic Canada is expected to benefit thousands of apprentices each year, with particular significance for those living in rural areas of Atlantic Canada, notes Marilyn Luscombe, New Brunswick Community College (NBCC) President, who is also the ACA chair. “The ACA is an example of how colleges can work together and raise the profile of apprenticeship training through innovative and dynamic, collaborative co-operation,” she added. “As a group, we will ensure that we do our best to provide advanced learning and/or online delivery of trades programming in each of the provinces represented in this MOU.”
Atlantic Colleges Atlantique is an entity of the public colleges in Atlantic Canada. Participating partners are: College of the North Atlantic (CNA), Collège de l’Île, Collège communautaire du Nouveau-Brunswick (CCNB), Holland College, New Brunswick Community College (NBCC), Nova Scotia Community College (NSCC), and Université Sainte-Anne.
The overall goal of ACA is to ensure that colleges maximize their contribution to the economic and social development of Atlantic Canada. The strategic plan of ACA focuses on three priorities:
1. Raising the profile, brand and awareness of public colleges in Atlantic Canada;
2. Influencing Public Policy in the region; and,
3. Strengthening the public college system in the region.
Atlantic public colleges provide service from more than 40 rural and urban campus locations in the region, and train approximately 50,000 full- and part-time students annually.