Red Deer College forced to make difficult decisions

Re: the provincial budget announcement: I could comment on cuts to post-secondary budgets over the last six years, but I won’t. I could comment on why an investment in post-secondary education is important in a time when those who have lost their jobs and wish to retrain or reskill may not have the opportunity to do so, but I won’t.

Re: the provincial budget announcement:

I could comment on cuts to post-secondary budgets over the last six years, but I won’t. I could comment on why an investment in post-secondary education is important in a time when those who have lost their jobs and wish to retrain or reskill may not have the opportunity to do so, but I won’t.

I have a bias — I am the president of Red Deer College and it would seem self-serving to make the case for support when so many other sectors have been affected by cuts as well. We all have to do our part, and we at RDC understand and accept that.

What needs comment is the impact of budget reductions on our ability to achieve our mandate. Quite simply, we will serve fewer students, deliver fewer programs, and provide fewer services to our learners. As we make our decisions on what programs and services will be affected, we use a well-developed model of program and service review, consider the impact on learners, faculty and staff, the economic impact on the region we serve, and we consider the community and political implications.

Not everyone will agree with our decisions, and while we respect and encourage their passion to fight for what they believe, the reality is clear — we can’t afford to do everything we are doing and in the same way. Change is inevitable.

In spite of difficult financial times, the RDC board of governors, in collaboration with our communities, has articulated a powerful, future-focused plan to position our college to transition to polytechnic university status. This comprehensive university model builds on our offerings of trades and apprenticeship programs, one-year certificates, two-year diplomas, university transfer, adult upgrading, continuing education and, critically, the ability for us to offer our own degrees.

The cost to people having to leave our region for degrees is not restricted to the loss of talent that doesn’t return. There is also the heavy cost of having to move to a larger city. This burden falls on families or takes the form of debilitating student debt. This prospect deters many from even pursuing degree-level education in the first place.

The impact of the budget reductions won’t deter us from our path. We will get through this, we always do.

More than 30,000 Albertans are predicted to lose their jobs this year. Job loss will occur across all sectors of the economy. To those who lose their jobs, and to their families who will be impacted, no words will suffice to ease their worries. It would be disingenuous to try.

At RDC, we will do our very best to mitigate the impact of the reductions to our budget on learners and our faculty and staff and on families.

Joel Ward

President and CEO

Red Deer College

Just Posted

Fenced-off SCS site development approved by Red Deer city council for seven years

‘Sunset clause’ means a new permit will be needed in 2025

Growing drug-fuelled emergencies at Red Deer’s Buffalo transitional housing complex

City council approves two additional mental health staffers at complex

Bystanders help Innisfail Mountie make arrest

A 35-year-old Ottawa man is facing a number of charges including resisting arrest

More supports for homeless needed for Red Deer

Provincial funding recently announced for Lethbridge

Second Central Alberta born jaguar dies

Mia’s brother Magnum dead at Discovery Wildlife Park

Orlando SC acquires Canadian Tesho Akindele in trade with FC Dallas for cash

ORLANDO, Fla. — Canadian forward Tesho Akindele was traded to Orlando City… Continue reading

Koskinen notches third shutout, McDavid gets winner as Oilers blank Flames 1-0

EDMONTON — The Edmonton Oilers appear to have shored up their defence… Continue reading

Beyonce performs at pre-wedding party in India

Beyonce brought her star power to a pre-wedding party for the daughter… Continue reading

Kirk Douglas celebrates 102nd birthday

LOS ANGELES — Actor Kirk Douglas got to celebrate his 102nd birthday… Continue reading

Ellen Page steps up attack on Nova Scotia pulp mill’s effluent pipeline

HALIFAX — Hollywood actor Ellen Page is doubling down on her criticism… Continue reading

Pence aide out of running to be Trump’s next chief of staff

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump’s top pick to replace chief of staff… Continue reading

Swath of South faces wintry mess: Snow, sleet, freezing rain

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — A massive storm brought snow, sleet, and freezing rain… Continue reading

‘I killed my best friend’: Opioids’ fatal grip on mayor, pal

MOUNT CARBON, Pa. — Janel Firestone found her son — the 24-year-old,… Continue reading

Most Read