Lakehead University and Georgian College announced today they will launch more than 20 new degree programs and transfer pathways at campuses in Barrie and Orillia over the next five years. The first of the new programs will begin as early as this September.
Georgian College President and CEO Dr. MaryLynn West-Moynes and Lakehead University President and Vice Chancellor Dr. Brian Stevenson made their remarks in a news conference at Georgian’s Barrie Campus.
Programs will include degrees offered individually by Lakehead and Georgian, as well as innovative integrated degrees offered jointly. These will give many students the opportunity to experience the best of both a college and university education, often earning a degree and diploma in just four years.
Dr. Stevenson explained the priorities of the Lakehead-Georgian partnership: “Today’s announcement is about students and collaboration. We are pleased to tell the students of today, and the graduates of tomorrow, that the City of Barrie and the County of Simcoe can expect even more university programs from Lakehead, even more degree programs from Georgian, and even more joint programs from both institutions that result in more graduates walking across a convocation stage with both a degree and a diploma in their hands.”
West-Moynes said that Georgian and Lakehead are dedicated to meeting the needs of local residents.
“We are proud to offer degrees in such high-demand fields as business administration, science, environmental management and more,” says West-Moynes. “We are committed to providing education that is market and career-focused. Our students will graduate job-ready, and our communities will have the workforce they need to grow our economy.”
Today’s announcement builds on the report of former cabinet minister John Gerretsen on the future of degree studies in Simcoe County. Lakehead and Georgian worked closely with the Ministry of Training Colleges and Universities (MTCU) on this new five-year framework for degree studies. The report confirms the ability of both institutions to introduce new and expand existing degree offerings to serve two thousand new degree students in the region.
The long-range plan unveiled today calls for continued expansion of degree study options beginning in September 2016 with two new honours degrees in Business Administration – Management and Leadership, and Interior Design at Georgian in Barrie. A new Lakehead degree in Commerce (Entrepreneurship) will launch in Orillia.
New programs planned for future years include such fields as health management, gerontology, industrial design, and engineering.
The plan also ensures that every Georgian College diploma graduate will have a pathway to a degree locally, through further study at either Lakehead or Georgian.
The number of degrees may increase as Lakehead and Georgian continue to work with MTCU on expanding options and meeting the needs of local employers and communities.
Both institutions are committed to ensuring students are the top priority in every aspect of planning and programming as they move as quickly as possible to offer new degree options.
Expanded degree opportunities at Lakehead University are subject to Lakehead Senate approval.