Ontario universities welcome Jobs and Prosperity Council's call for partnerships

TORONTO, Dec. 19, 2012 /CNW/ - Ontario universities welcome a new report by the Jobs and Prosperity Council that calls for partnerships among government, the education and private sectors, and other stakeholders to play an integral part in improving Ontario's economic competitiveness.

Ontario universities recognize the importance of fostering these relationships and their role in providing students with the skills they need to be successful.

Ontario universities also welcome the report's call for experiential learning opportunities and growth in international student enrollment. On campuses across the province, these recommendations are becoming a reality.

Within our universities there is a quiet transformation underway: universities are creating new academic programs that address labour market needs, expanding career services and increasing their experiential learning offerings. They are partnering with local businesses and community stakeholders to provide student entrepreneurs with mentorships, office spaces and funds, and expediting the growth of new start-ups.

"Universities are committed to working with government, communities and businesses to offer students new types of learning environments that not only prepare them for the workforce, but to have the flexibility and resourcefulness to adapt in our ever changing world," said Alastair Summerlee, Chair of COU and President and Vice-Chancellor of the University of Guelph.

The Jobs and Prosperity Council, was formed last spring by the provincial government to provide advice on improving Ontario's long-term productivity and competitiveness. According to the report, entitled Advantage Ontario, our highly skilled workforce is one of the province's greatest strengths in ensuring prosperity and job creation in the future.

"Today's students need a broad range of skills, and knowledge, and Ontario universities are ensuring our students are receiving the type of education that fosters good citizenship, innovation, entrepreneurship and creativity," says Bonnie M. Patterson, COU President and CEO.

Visit the Council of Ontario Universities website at www.cou.on.ca
Follow us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/CouncilofOntarioUniversities

SOURCE: Council of Ontario Universities

For further information:

Jennifer Grass
Senior Director, Communications and Public Affairs


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