More attend Bible schools

The future looks bright for Central Alberta Bible colleges. There’s no sign Canadian University College, Prairie Bible Institute and Living Faith Bible College will follow suit of Gardner College.

A pedestrian walks through the Canadian University College campus. Classes at Canadian University College start on Sept. 7.

A pedestrian walks through the Canadian University College campus. Classes at Canadian University College start on Sept. 7.

The future looks bright for Central Alberta Bible colleges.

There’s no sign Canadian University College, Prairie Bible Institute and Living Faith Bible College will follow suit of Gardner College. The Camrose-based college is reportedly not accepting students in the fall because of low enrolment and financial woes.

All three local institutes project a significant spike in enrolment for the upcoming school year.

Lacombe-based Canadian University College estimates more than 550 students, up 57 students from last year, will enrol this year.

This follows record-breaking enrolment year of 493 students, the highest in its 104 year-history.

Nicole Bartolay, CUC office manager for marketing and enrolment, credits the surge to an increased awareness in the necessity of post-secondary education and the desire of students to study closer to home.

The college also boasts an education program where students can graduate with a bachelor of education without the need to finish at another institute.

The Prairie Bible Institute in Three Hills will have one of the largest incoming classes in recent years this fall.

The school is comprised of three separate colleges — Prairie Bible College, Prairie College of Applied Arts and Technology and Prairie Scholl of Mission Aviation.

Peter Mal, Prairie Bible Institute managing director of enrolment and marketing, said 180 new students will start classes. That is one of the largest intakes in the last decade.

The 2011-2012 enrolment is expected to be in the 300 student range, an increase of 50 students. Mal said the college has watched as enrolment dwindled in the last seven years and is optimistic about future enrolments.

He credits the increasing popularity in one-year certificate programs and a refocusing on its mandate for the recent surge.

“We believe we are being clear about our why we exist and what we hope to accomplish in our lives of our students while we are here,” he said. “We feel very blessed our numbers have come up and all around our support has been good.”

The Living Faith Bible College, 11 km west of Caroline, celebrated its 40th anniversary this year. Like Prairie Bible Institute, the college has experienced recent years of low enrolment.

Sean Gurnsey, admissions/recruitment, said news of the closure of Gardner College was not surprising because Bible college enrolment is down in general.

“In the last seven years, I have seen a decline in just about every Bible institute that I have talked to,” said Gurnsey.

“We’re pretty small and that’s actually our kind of benefit because we can still be very small and still survive.”

Last year, 18 students enrolled in the non-denominational college and this fall, between 30 and 35 students are expected to study at the institute.

Gurnsey said improved recruitment strategies coupled with the tweaking of teaching strategies helped boost the numbers.

“We’re not planning to close anytime soon,” he said. “I have a high confidence that we are going to see an increase in numbers in the next few years.”

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Red Deer Rebels forward Ethan Rowland battles with Medicine Hat Tigers forward Brett Kemp during WHL action at the Centrium Saturday night. (Photo by ROB WALLATOR/Red Deer Rebels)
Tigers claw back, hand Rebels 11th straight loss

Tigers 5 Rebels 2 The same old issues continue to plague the… Continue reading

There were six additional deaths across Alberta reported over the past 24 hours, bringing the death toll to 1,926 since the beginning of the pandemic. (File photo)
AstraZeneca vaccine is ready to be used at a homeless shelter in Romford, east London, Wednesday, Feb. 3, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Frank Augstein
AstraZeneca-linked blood clot confirmed in Alberta

A case of an AstraZeneca-linked blood clot has been confirmed in Alberta,… Continue reading

The Red Deer Catholic Regional Schools Board of Trustees selected the name St. Lorenzo Ruiz Middle School to be built in the north end of Red Deer. (Photo Courtesy of  Red Deer Catholic Regional Schools)
Red Deer Catholic Regional Schools raises about $8,720 for Terry Fox Foundation

Red Deer Catholic Regional Schools raised about $8,720 for the Terry Fox… Continue reading

A nurse gets a swab ready at a temporary COVID-19 test clinic in Montreal, on Friday, May 15, 2020. Health Canada has reversed course on home test kits for COVID-19, saying it will now review applications for such devices. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
Alberta declines Ontario’s request to send health-care workers

Alberta is “not in a position” to send health-care workers out of… Continue reading

Red Deer Public Schools will not pilot the new draft curriculum at its elementary schools. (File photo contributed by Red Deer Public Schools)
UPDATED: Red Deer Public Schools says no to piloting new curriculum

Alberta Teachers’ Association support school boards

Each spring, the Okanagan Fest-of-Ale is held in Penticton. This year, as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the festival will not be held. However, beer is still available. How much do you know about this beverage? (
QUIZ: How much do you really know about beer?

Put your knowledge to the test with this short quiz

Ontario Premier Doug Ford points on a COVID-19 caseload projection model graph during a press conference at Queen's Park, in Toronto, Friday, April 16, 2021. Ontario was set to backtrack on controversial new police powers to enforce stay-at-home orders implemented in the battle against COVID-19.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
Ford backtracks on new police COVID-19 powers amid intense backlash

TORONTO — Furious criticism of new anti-pandemic powers that allow police in… Continue reading

The official program for the National Commemorative Ceremony in honour of Prince Philip, The Duke of Edinburgh, sits on an empty pew prior to the ceremony at Christ Church Cathedral in Ottawa on Saturday, April 17, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Prince Philip remembered as ‘a man of great service’ during Canada’s memorial service

Canada’s commemorative ceremony in honour of the late Prince Philip offered a… Continue reading

CF Montreal head coach Wilfried Nancy speaks to his players during the team's practice Tuesday, March 16, 2021 in Montreal. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
CF Montreal puts on a show, defeating Toronto FC 4-2 in MLS season opener

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — CF Montreal, carving open Toronto FC’s defence, cruised… Continue reading

Demonstrators using umbrellas as shields approach a point in a perimeter security fence during a protest over the fatal shooting of Daunte Wright during traffic stop, outside the Brooklyn Center Police Department, Friday, April 16, 2021, in Brooklyn Center, Minn. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)
Journalists allege police harassment at Minnesota protests

Some journalists covering protests over the police fatal shooting of Daunte Wright,… Continue reading

A container ship is docked in the Port of Montreal, Wednesday, February 17, 2021 in Montreal.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Montreal dockworkers begin weekend strikes as talks drag on

MONTREAL — Dockworkers at the Port of Montreal kicked off a series… Continue reading

Brad Dahr, 53, is facing numerous charges. (Photo contributed by Alberta RCMP)
Alberta man charged for alleged sexual offences against children

An Edmonton man has been charged for alleged sexual offences against children… Continue reading

A person walks past a COVID-19 mural designed by artist Emily May Rose on a rainy day during the COVID-19 pandemic in Toronto on Monday, April 12, 2021. Employment lawyers say flouting COVID-19 public health orders when off the job or coming into work while knowingly sick could warrant discipline in the workplace. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Risky pandemic behaviour off the clock could mean workplace discipline: lawyers

CALGARY — Employment lawyers say flouting COVID-19 public health orders when off… Continue reading

Most Read