Colleges need to be included in new government funding for work-integrated learning opportunities


July 20, 2017

SARNIA, July 20, 2017 – Colleges play a key role in building a more inclusive Canadian economy and a recent federal government announcement to create more work-integrated learning (WIL) opportunities through Mitacs should reflect this. In the 2017 Budget, the federal government announced the allocation of $221M over five years through Mitacs, the non-profit, national research organization that manages research and training programs for graduate students and postdoctoral fellows through partnerships between academia, industry and government.

Lambton College supports the creation of more WIL opportunities for students through Mitacs and strongly encourages the federal government to ensure Canadian colleges are eligible to receive Mitacs funding. The new initiative aims to provide 10,000 internships per year by 2020 for post-secondary students, up from the current level of around 3,750 placements.

“Expanding these internships to colleges and institutes is absolutely essential to achieving these targets,” explains Judith Morris, President & CEO, Lambton College. “As the largest employer of paid research students in Canada for a medium-sized college, Lambton College recognizes the enormous impact applied research opportunities have on students, industry partners, and the economy.”

Since 2014, Lambton College has provided paid positions for 237 research students, created 65 paid co-op placements, and hired 27 graduate students. Additionally, many of these research students have been hired by project partners due to their experience and knowledge of working with the company’s processes and products.

Morris says that in order to leverage these existing relationships between colleges and industry, it’s essential that colleges and institutes are eligible to access the federal government’s WIL funding allocated to Mitacs.

“Colleges and institutes will help maximize the impact of the federal government’s investment while providing skills training and learning opportunities that are in tune with the needs of both students and employers, which will have long-term benefits for our students, Lambton College, and our region,” she says.

Lambton College currently ranks first in Ontario and third in Canada for Applied Research Activity. The College is also first in Canada for the number of paid research students (students involved in applied research projects that were paid for their work) at a medium-sized college.

For more information on Research & Innovation at Lambton College, go to lambtoncollege.ca/research.


For media inquiries or more information:

Jami Kloet
Corporate Communications Coordinator
Lambton College
Telephone: 519-542-7751 ext. 3337
Mobile: 519-328-2081
Email: jami.kloet@lambtoncollege.ca