Ward: Get to know your college

Red Deer College exists to support the intellectual, economic, cultural and social development of Central Alberta. In doing so, we focus on ensuring our learners are at the centre of our decision making and, at the same time, we demonstrate good financial stewardship thereby respecting the taxpayers who fund more than 50 per cent of our budget. We have a proud history of more than 50 years of providing learning opportunities to Central Albertans.

To help provide you with an over-arching look at the college, I’ve prepared a list of things you might not know about RDC:

l RDC contributes more than $327 million to the economy of Central Alberta each year

l RDC’s operating budget for 2016/17 is almost $103 million. $60 million is salaries and benefits to more than 1,400 full- and part-time faculty and staff

l We awarded almost $1 million in student scholarships and awards last year

l We offer more than 100 programs of study at RDC including apprenticeship, as well as a wide variety of one-, two-, and four-year programs

l Our enrolment grew almost 20 per cent over the past two years to almost 8,000 students including 3,100 in our Trades programs

l RDC Athletics teams have won 19 national championships and 145 provincial championships

l Our School of Continuing Education hosted 36,000 community learners last year

l 64 per cent of our students come from Central Alberta

l 90 per cent of our students get jobs within six months of graduation

l 96 per cent of our students are satisfied with the quality of education they received from our faculty

l More than 100,000 people enjoy events at the college each year.

We are proud of the work we do on behalf of the citizens of Central Alberta, and we continue to plan for a bright future. That future includes more degrees to ensure our learners have opportunities to complete their education close to home.

In the next few columns, I will profile some of the amazing work our faculty are doing to support teaching and learning at RDC.

More than 800 full- and part-time faculty work at RDC, and their expertise in teaching, research and scholarly activity ensure our learners’ experiences at RDC prepares them for successful careers and lives.

And finally, an update on the Gary W. Harris Canada Games Centre/Centre des Jeux du Canada Gary W. Harris.

We are on time and on budget for an August 2018 opening.

This will enable us to prepare for the Canada Winter Games coming in February 2019.

May you all have a happy and enjoyable 2017, and remember that you are always welcome at your College.

Joel Ward is president and CEO of Red Deer College.

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