George Brown College announces innovation exchange and expansion of Waterfront Campus
January 23, 2017 by George Brown College
George Brown College announced today an expansion of its Waterfront Campus, to be located in Daniels Waterfront – City of the Arts, just blocks from George Brown’s Daphne Cockwell Centre for Health Sciences. The $59-million facility will house part of George Brown’s School of Design, including its interdisciplinary design studio, Institute without Boundaries, as well as a new Innovation Exchange focussed on design solutions for the smart economy.
“We are very excited to continue to develop our Waterfront Campus and take another step forward in the revitalization of the East Bayfront community,” said Anne Sado, George Brown College president. “What’s more, our new Innovation Exchange will improve innovation literacy and help the economy prosper through the digital age.”
With the federal government’s Post-Secondary Institutions Strategic Investment Fund contributing $15.6M, George Brown will launch the Innovation Exchange, a specialized research, innovation and training centre. It will offer programs that equip students with industry-identified, specialized skills to meet workforce demand, while also providing convenient retraining for the current workforce. The goal is to help fill critical labour market gaps by offering students hands-on, real-world experience that can be applied to their career after graduation, while simultaneously providing industry partners with research and innovation support to help companies scale-up and commercialize new products and services.
“George Brown College broke new ground when it established a waterfront campus,” said Adam Vaughan, Member of Parliament for Spadina-Fort York. “Today, with help from the federal government, the College is breaking new ground again with an innovative new centre of excellence and once again Toronto’s waterfront is the smart choice.”
Daniels Waterfront – City of the Arts is a master-planned, mixed-use community being developed by The Daniels Corporation and WJ Properties at the northeast corner of Lower Jarvis and Queens Quay East, steps to Lake Ontario. “The community is the essence of its name,” said Daniels vice-president Martin Blake. “Our vision includes the arts, education, training, mentorship and apprenticeship programs critical to building careers. As a result, the arts serve as a social, cultural and economic driver, just as they do in Regent Park, where George Brown’s Fashion Exchange provides training for industry positions. We are thrilled to welcome George Brown College to Daniels Waterfront – City of the Arts and proud that the Innovation Exchange takes our partnership to a new level, serving the needs of the design, arts and digital media sectors, and enabling residents to live, work, play, learn and create.”
George Brown’s new space will help address the challenges and bridge the gap between student demand for training and critical skills shortages in key sectors including finance, health care, and sustainable construction – industries requiring IT-enabled business models that are design driven, customer-centric and employ user experience, design and new user interface approaches.
“We are building on George Brown’s strong foundation for creating intersections between learning, innovation and research by partnering with industry to provide our students with the latest know-how and skills demanded by the labour market,” said Luigi Ferrara, Dean of the Centre for Arts, Design & Information Technology at George Brown College. “Our Innovation Exchange will be a living lab to test commercial ideas, concepts and user functionality while providing our students with hands-on experience alongside the industry’s most innovative creators.”
Scheduled for occupancy in Fall/Winter 2018, approximately 1,800 students will be trained at George Brown’s space in Daniels City of the Arts each year, providing 600 highly skilled and in-demand graduates annually. Students will acquire, apply and gain design and innovation literacy skills, including the ability to think creatively, evaluate and apply problem-solving skills to diverse industrial contexts, applicable to any industry and essential for increasing innovation and productivity.
SOURCE: George Brown College
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