$90-million investment will support jobs, expand research and foster innovation in the technology sector
SURREY, BC, Nov. 8, 2016 /CNW/ - The Government of Canada today announced a $90-million investment in a new energy systems engineering building at Simon Fraser University. The investment will equip post-secondary students with the skills, knowledge and education needed to ensure Canada's youth are prepared to take advantage of the well-paying middle-class jobs of today and tomorrow.
The joint federal-provincial investment was announced by the Right Honourable Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada, and by the Honourable Christy Clark, Premier of British Columbia.
The funding will support the construction of a new building for degree programs in energy systems and environmental engineering. The five-storey, 15,000-square-metre building will allow the university to expand its research in the energy, hydrogen, electricity and liquefied natural gas sectors, which will help current and future generations of young people train for the good, well-paying jobs of the future.
The building will also accommodate the Mechatronics Systems Engineering program, which combines the fields of mechanical, electrical and software engineering with entrepreneurship and business. The new space will be dedicated to students commercializing their research through the Technology Entrepreneurship program.
Federal-provincial investments in this project include:
- $45 million from the Government of Canada; and
- $45 million from the Province of British Columbia.
Simon Fraser University and private donors will contribute $26 million toward a second phase of the project, and the university is also contributing land valued at $10 million, for a total project value of $126 million.
"This once-in-a-generation investment is a historic leap to position Canada as a global centre for innovation. That means making Canada a world leader in turning ideas into solutions, science into technologies, skills into jobs and start-up companies into global successes. This investment will create conditions that are conducive to innovation and long-term growth, which will in turn keep the Canadian economy globally competitive and help grow the middle class."
– The Right Honourable Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada
"British Columbia's thriving tech sector is a key part of Canada's leading economy, paying wages that are 75 percent higher than average. The new energy systems engineering building at Simon Fraser University will help ensure British Columbians are first in line for those jobs, while driving innovation, prosperity and job creation throughout our province."
– The Honourable Christy Clark, Premier of British Columbia
"Engineering science programs at Simon Fraser University intentionally challenge students to prepare them to be innovators in an increasingly high-tech world. The energy systems engineering building will allow students to develop the skills needed to design and develop tomorrow's energy systems, which are rapidly evolving to anticipate society's future energy needs."
– Andrew Petter, President, Simon Fraser University
- Government of Canada funding for this project is being provided through the Post-Secondary Institutions Strategic Investment Fund. This fund is designed to promote economic activity across Canada and help Canada's universities and colleges develop highly skilled workers, act as engines of discovery and collaborate on innovations that help Canadian companies compete and grow internationally.
- The Post-Secondary Institutions Strategic Investment Fund supports the Government of Canada's climate change objectives by encouraging sustainable and green infrastructure projects.
- The Government of British Columbia has invested more than $2.8 billion in capital and infrastructure projects at public post-secondary institutions in British Columbia since 2001, including more than 1,750 capital projects throughout the province.
- The provincial government is directly investing $904 million in planned capital expenses in the post-secondary sector over the next three years (2016–17 to 2018–19).
- Post-Secondary Institutions Strategic Investment Fund website
- Post-Secondary Institutions Strategic Investment Fund backgrounder
- Innovation Agenda backgrounder
- #BCTECH Strategy
- BC Jobs Plan Update
- B.C.'s Skills for Jobs Blueprint
SOURCE Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada
For further information: Philip Proulx, Press Secretary, Office of the Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development, 343-291-2500; Media Relations, Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada, 343-291-1777, [email protected]; Trish Fougner, Communications Manager, British Columbia Ministry of Advanced Education, 250-952-6400; Kurt Heinrich, Director, University Communications, Simon Fraser University, 778-782-3404