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February 12, 2004 1:48 PM

Gift of $100,000 Boosts New Degree Programs at Conestoga

Conestoga College has received a gift of $100,000, which will be used to further the College's mandate to provide high-level technical education opportunities to maintain and advance local economic development.

"This generous gesture will allow us to move forward with confidence in an area where industry has a profound need - degree programs that combine theoretical learning with applied skills at a very high level," says Conestoga President John Tibbits. "Our degree program initiatives, combined with our record of excellence in diploma, certificate and apprenticeship programs, mark Conestoga as the region's most important and valuable source of education that contributes to the economic advancement so vital to community development."

The gift comes from the Dare family of Kitchener. The Dares are a well-established and highly respected part of the community and have previously given to worthy community initiatives in health care, the arts and education.

Graham Dare, Co-Chair of Dare Foods Limited, comments, "We chose Conestoga College because of how the College has flourished in recent years and how well managed it is. We have great respect for the abilities and vision of President Tibbits."

The $100,000 will go towards the development of curriculum and acquisition of equipment for use in two Bachelor of Applied Technology programs: Architecture - Project and Facility Management, and Advanced Manufacturing Technologies - Wood and Composite Products.

Both are four-year programs which combine engineering and manufacturing skills, business development and management skills, and liberal studies. The focus of the architecture program is on all phases of project planning and execution connected with the built environment, whether new initiatives or existing structures. The wood products manufacturing program emphasizes skills for the growing and rapidly changing global wood products fabrication industry - interior, exterior and furnishing elements associated with all types of structures.

Both programs are fully co-op and built around the concept of project-based learning. Architecture - Project and Facility Management admitted its first students in the fall of 2003. Advanced Manufacturing Technologies - Wood and Composite Products is scheduled to begin in the fall of 2004.

CONTACT: Ingrid Town, 519-748-5220, ext. 3490, itown@conestogac.on.ca

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