Province recognizes importance of innovation, provides funding for Shad Valley youth enrichment program

    EDMONTON and WATERLOO, ON, June 3 /CNW/ - Funding to support the
development of Alberta's high school students who have been identified as top
performers, innovative thinkers, and future leaders continues to be invested
by the Government of Alberta.
    2008 marks the second instalment of a three-year funding commitment to
Shad Valley International. The Waterloo, Ontario based organization offers
summer enrichment programs to students in grade 10, 11 and 12. The four week
program helps students develop an entrepreneurial mindset, encourages them to
consider fields of study that will increase Canada's innovation capacity, and
motivates them to take advantage of their advantage and make an impact.
    "Increasing Alberta's innovation is a priority for future business and
economic prosperity. The province is in need of strategies to advance its
environmental, social, and economic growth," explains Doug Horner, Alberta
Advanced Education and Technology Minister. "These strategies will be
initiated and implemented by our future leaders who are developed in programs
like Shad Valley."
    This year, close to 60 students from Alberta will benefit from the Shad
Valley program during the month of July. Currently, Alberta has the third
highest provincial enrollment rates in the program.
    The province and Alberta businesses also engage strongly in Shad's
internship program, which complements the academic Shad Valley session with
real-world business experience. 20% of all Shad Valley internships nationally
were offered in Alberta to Alberta participants in 2007. This number reflects
both the vibrant economy in the province as well as the desire by Alberta
companies to introduce bright, innovative talent to their companies at an
early stage. In 2007, five placements were offered by the Alberta Government
in the departments of Education, Environment, Sustainable Resource
Development, Agriculture and Food, and Advanced Education
    "Canada faces the growing problem of a shrinking labour force and
retiring baby-boomers. The youth of today will affect our national and global
economy tomorrow. Alberta has recognized the need for student programs where
youth can be exposed to the business arena," says Horner.
    "Our three-year plan with Alberta solidifies their commitment to
providing leadership and innovation opportunities for students," said 
Barry Bisson, President of Shad Valley International. "As well, it raises
other provinces' awareness and encourages them to provide their youth with the
same competitive advantage that Albertan students have: the chance to be part
of a life-directing, life-changing experience and to take their places as the
leaders of tomorrow."

    Shad Valley International is a not-for-profit registered charity. The
award-winning Shad Valley program was launched in 1981, and is hosted at 12
leading Canadian universities each summer, including the University of Calgary
since 1984. Over 600 high-potential students benefit from the Shad Valley
experience each summer and Shad currently boasts a network of over 10,000 Shad
Valley alumni, including 18 Rhodes Scholars, and countless award winning
business and academic leaders.

For further information:

For further information: MEDIA CONTACTS: Shad Valley Contact: Barry
Bisson, Shad Valley International, (519) 884-8844 ext. 227; Government of
Alberta Contact: Allia Sabir, Communications, Advanced Education and
Technology, (780) 644-2068,

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