This article was originally published via Gulf News- Canada.
The announcement came in the form of a news release from Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA) on Sept. 9 and included funding for three projects with the College of the North Atlantic to enhance programming, training capability and outreach capacity.
The Port aux Basques campus was included as one of these three projects with $462,859 invested for the NDT course.
The release said the funding will enable the college to introduce new technologies and equipment to improve the training capabilities of students, which is a key element of quality assurance in the manufacturing sector.
Brian Tobin, interim vice president academic and student services for the college, said recognizing the appreciation the college has for this funding and the continued support from its partners is important.
"They recognize our commitment to offering a quality training program and our ability to provide a great learning experience for our students," said Tobin.
The program at the college is currently in its 25th year, and Tobin said a lot of things have changed over the years and this type of substantial investment allows the college to continue with the quality of the program.
Getting to the core of the funding, Tobin shared major components of what the investment will bring to the college.
The funding means the college was able to acquire new technologies. The new equipment is current in the field, and students will be able to use the new equipment as part of their training said Tobin.
The funding will also allow the college to acquire mobile technologies, which are also current in the field.
"Before, most of the training days would be classroom or laboratory based," said Tobin. "Now, the new technology will enable the students to train directly out in the field by mirroring the type of equipment the industry is now using."
He also said that this investment supports the college's movement towards training in specialized disciplines in NDT, opening their ability to provide new types of training.
The existing equipment will also be brought up to date to make sure it meets or exceeds industry standards.
Finally, the funding investment also means that the college is able to increase the quantity of the equipment it has, enabling the college to train more people with more equipment, including more test materials to increase learning experience and advance the program.
Some of the equipment that the college has been able to obtain through the funding includes new digital equipment for the radiology component, a new immersion tank for the ultrasonic component and new mobile magnetic particle units.
Tobin said this equipment is not only going to attract a new generation of students that will consider this a great asset, but it is also something that gives the college a great deal of excitement.
Judy Foote, MP for Random-Burin-St. George's, was also pleased to hear about the funding investment in her riding.
She said the Port aux Basques campus is the only campus in Atlantic Canada offering this course and said it is important that students have access to modern technology and equipment.
Foote recognizes the need for the college graduates to be able to compete for positions in the job market and said they need to be able to satisfy the requirements by employers.
Tobin agreed and said the NDT centre in Port aux Basques is recognized as a leader.
"We do maintain an emphasis on industry standards, quality training and safety," said Tobin.
He described those aspects as being important principles and said the announcement will undoubtedly go a long way towards affirming the status of the program at the campus and also as a leader in this type of training.