Attend a Community College That Has Earned the Respect of the Community

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    Jul 28, 2014
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Attend a Community College That Has Earned the Respect of the Community Photo by Jason White

When choosing a college program, there is a lot more to consider than just the type of training you will receive. You want to look at the facilities from which you will learn, who is teaching the courses, graduates' success rate and the school's overall reputation.

Reputation: One institution that has been reputable since it first opened in 1966 is Toronto's Centennial College. In fact, it is the first community college in Ontario. As such, it basically set the precedent for all of the colleges that have followed it. Locally, it is known for offering students practical educations across areas such as business, communications, media and design; community and health studies; engineering technology and applied science; hospitality, tourism and culture; and transportation. Furthermore, the school has extensive experience in teaching international students. Internationally, meanwhile, it is enabling more Canadian learners to have a global adventure — be it completing a semester in Spain, an internship in South Africa or a Global Citizenship learning experience in the Amazon Basin.

Instructors: All of the instructors who are hired by Centennial College are experts in their field, and many of them are still somehow involved with or practicing their craft. As such, these instructors are able to go beyond teaching from textbooks. They include their personal experiences to punctuate points and ensure that students are retaining the knowledge they are acquiring. In fact, many instructors ensure that they make themselves available to students whether it be outside of classroom time via email or on-campus for one-on-one discussions.

Facilities: Centennial College's classrooms and labs offer students "real world" before they even graduate. For example, Ashtonbee Campus, where the School of Transportation is housed, includes a range of cars donated by dealerships and car manufacturers so that students may practice on the real deal. At Morningside Campus, meanwhile, students from community and health studies work in mock clinical settings that include a massage therapy clinic, esthetics spa, hospital, pharmacy and more. Progress Campus, which is the largest Centennial location, offers hospitality students brand new labs in the Culinary Arts Centre, a living lab restaurant, a conference centre and residences that are fully run by students. Lastly, the Story Arts Centre students (who come from the School of Communications, Media and Design) train in spacious art studios, newsrooms, publishing and editing suites, and many other such classrooms.

Learning Outcomes: The bottom line of obtaining an education from this community college is that students are job ready. And that's a fact. More than 90 per cent of employers hiring Centennial grads have told the college they are satisfied or very satisfied with their hires. Students often score above average on provincial exams.

Author's Profile

Jason, in his article about the community college environment, focuses on Centennial College and the ways in which it supports students and graduates to ensure that they get the most out of their education.

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