A tech announcement will be made at SFU Surrey today. (SFU photo)

A tech announcement will be made at SFU Surrey today. (SFU photo)

Surrey universities to receive hundreds of new tech student spaces

Provincial investment will create nearly 3,000 tech-related student spaces across B.C.

SFU Surrey is receiving hundreds of new tech student spaces, the provincial government has announced.

The university will receive 320 undergrad seats and 120 grad level seats at SFU Surrey for its Sustainable Energy Engineering Program, which is part of 2,900 new seats province-wide.

Kwantlen Polytechnic University will receive 40 spaces in a mechatronics and advanced manufacturing-technology diploma.

Advanced Education Skills and Training Minister Melanie Mark, an SFU alumni, made the announcement in Surrey Tuesday morning.

Mark noted the province will invest $4.4 million this year, and that investment is expected to increase to $42 million.

“We’re helping students in British Columbia by improving access to education with thousands more tech spaces that include degree, diploma and certificate programs,” said Mark, noting over 83,000 tech-related job openings are expected to materialize in B.C. in the next decade.

Minister of Advanced Education, Skills and Training Melanie Mark at SFU Surrey on Jan. 16. (Photo submitted)

“Our vibrant tech sector supports good-paying jobs, like computer programmers, engineers and information system analysts. We are investing millions of dollars in the future creators of an innovative, strong and sustainable 21st-century economy.”

The investment will help create new seats for SFU Surrey’s new Sustainable Energy Engineering Program that will focus on “smart cities, clean transportation and sustainable manufacturing,” to be housed in a five-storey, $126-million Bing Thom designed building currently under construction.

At SFU Surrey, there will be an additional 320 undergraduate spaces and 120 graduate spaces by 2021-22, expected to result in 140 additional graduates per year by 2023.

“This is great news for SFU Surrey, Kwantlen Polytechnic University and many other post-secondary institutions,” said SFU Surrey’s executive director Joanne Curry.

“The announcement is even better news for the province’s tech sector,” Curry added. “In addition to providing talent that the sector needs to grow, the funding will attract leading faculty whose research will drive innovation and generate new market opportunities.”

The new seats for SFU, Curry said, “will support the first phase of a long-awaited expansion that, according to a Memorandum of Understanding signed by SFU and the Province in 2006, was intended to double number of SFU Surrey student spaces to 5000 by 2015.

“This initial investment will enable SFU to create 440 undergraduate and graduate student spaces and hire over 20 new faculty” in the Sustainable Energy Engineering Program, she noted.

Curry said the expansion will “enable the creation of a clean-tech cluster alongside the health-tech hub that has emerged within Innovation Boulevard,” and will “produce a new source of highly skilled, home-grown talent that will encourage business growth.”

The Sustainable Energy Engineering Program is the first of three expansion phases planned by SFU, Curry noted.

“The next two will focus on health innovation and creative technologies, both areas of great importance to the community and to the province,” she said. “Further investments will allow more students to graduate with knowledge and skills to support innovative approaches in community health, disease prevention, and mental health and addictions. Companies in all sectors of BC’s economy will be supported with the latest innovations in augmented and virtual reality and by big data. This will generate still more research, start-ups and entrepreneurial approaches.”

See also: ‘Game-changing’ Surrey-born technology tests brain vital signs



amy.reid@surreynowleader.com

Like us on Facebook and follow Amy on Twitter

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

Just Posted

Surrey RCMP are investigating a reported assault at Panorama Ridge Secondary. (Shane MacKichan photos)
UPDATE: Two youths arrested after assault with a weapon at Panorama Ridge Secondary in Surrey

School placed on a ‘hold and secure’ until safety of all students confirmed

Island Health chief medical officer Dr. Richard Stanwick receives a first dose of Pfizer vaccine, Dec. 22, 2020. (B.C. government)
COVID-19: B.C. seniors aged 90+ can start to sign up for vaccination on March 8

Long-term care residents protected by shots already given

Image Surrey.ca
Surrey to pony up one-third of cost to cover Cloverdale lacrosse box in 2022

This will be at the Cloverdale Athletic Park at 64th Avenue and 168th Street

Delta Mayor George Harvie. (Submitted photo)
Mayor asks Fraser Health to reconcider North Delta vaccination site

Harvie wants a North Delta clinic to complement the South Delta location

B.C. Court of Appeal in Vancouver. (File photo: Tom Zytaruk)
Murder conviction upheld in case where Surrey mom was stabbed in front of her kids

Jury in 2017 found Tanpreet Kaur Athwal, aka Sonia Kaur Gill, guilty of first-degree murder in 2007 death of Amanpreet Bahia, 33

Langley resident Carrie MacKay shared a video showing how stairs are a challenge after spending weeks in hospital battling COVID-19 (Special to Langley Advance Times)
VIDEO: Stairs a challenge for B.C. woman who chronicled COVID-19 battle

‘I can now walk for six (to) 10 minutes a day’

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates B.C.’s coronavirus situation, May 8, 2020. (B.C. government photo)
B.C.’s weekend COVID-19 cases: 532 Saturday, 508 Sunday, 438 Monday

Fraser Health still has most, eight more coronavirus deaths

B.C. Attorney General David Eby speaks in the legislature, Dec. 7, 2020. Eby was given responsibility for housing after the October 2020 provincial election. (Hansard TV)
B.C. extends COVID-19 rent freeze again, to the end of 2021

‘Renoviction’ rules tightened, rent capped to inflation in 2022

Face mask hangs from a rear-view mirror. (Black Press image)
B.C. CDC unveils guide on how to carpool during the pandemic

Wearing masks, keeping windows open key to slowing the spread of COVID-19

Churches, including Langley’s Riverside Calvary Church, are challenging the regulations barring them from holding in-person worship services during COVID-19. (Langley Advance Times file)
Minister of Families, Children and Social Development Ahmed Hussen takes part in an update on the COVID pandemic during a press conference in Ottawa on October 27, 2020. The City of Vancouver says it has purchased a former hotel at a major thoroughfare that can house about 65 units to accommodate homeless people. A joint news release by the Minister of Families, Children and Social Development, the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation and city says 2075 Kingsway, Days Inn by Wyndham Vancouver, will be ready for accommodation this November. The Minister of Families, Children and Social Development Ahmed Hussen also announced a $51.5 million Rapid Housing Initiative for Vancouver that is expected to create 135 new affordable homes. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Former Vancouver hotel to be converted to 65 units for homeless people by the fall

The former Days Inn on Kingsway will be ready to house people in November

Det. Sgt. Jim Callender. (Hamilton Police Service screenshot)
B.C. man dead, woman seriously injured after shooting in Hamilton, Ont.

The man was in the process of moving to the greater Toronto area, police say

(Black Press file photo)
Child in critical condition, homicide investigators probe incident near Agassiz

The child was transported to hospital but is not expected to survive

Most Read