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October 22, 2007 8:33 AM

Conestoga College Receives $100,000 Donation from TD Bank Financial Group to Support Health Care Education

TD donated 100k to ConestogaA $100,000 donation to Kitchener-based Conestoga College Institute of Technology and Advanced Learning from TD Bank Financial Group will allow the college to offer new student bursaries, an annual award to recognize outstanding effort on the part of clinical training facilities, contribute to creation of the Conestoga Centre for Interprofessional Learning for Health Care and annual faculty events to showcase innovation in health care education. With these initiatives, Conestoga College will be able to support and encourage an orientation towards interprofessional practice among its students and faculty.

Interprofessional practice education emphasizes an integrated, consultative teamwork approach to health care. It calls upon the contributions and expertise of those with various specialties for the purpose of providing a totality of health care services.

TD Bank Financial Group Deputy Chair Frank McKenna and Conestoga President John Tibbits

"Accessibility to funds for continuing education is often one of the biggest hurdles for students and practicing professionals. By improving the funding available, TD can play an important role in developing health care professionals for our communities," said Frank McKenna, Deputy Chair, TD Bank Financial Group. "Conestoga College has a reputation for producing enthusiastic and bright thinkers and we hope our contribution to the college will help to continue this tradition."

The majority of funds will be used to create the TD Bank Financial Group Bursaries for Interprofessional Learning. The bursaries will be given to address the financial needs of students who are nearing the end of their program and have yet to complete their final practicum. Eligible students will include those enrolled in nursing degree, practical nursing, respiratory therapy, occupational therapist/physiotherapist assistant, personal support worker and paramedic programs. The bursaries will be awarded beginning in the 2008-2009 academic year.

Remaining funds will be used to institute a TD Canada Trust Award for the Practicum Site of the Year and the TD Canada Trust Seminar for Excellence in Health Care Education. These two elements will help to create a catalyst for fostering student success and place a focus on interprofessional health care practice.

"The interprofessional approach to health care is both exciting and necessary," said Marlene Raasok, Conestoga's Associate Vice-President for Health Sciences, Community Services and Biotechnology. "Conestoga has a reputation in Ontario and Canada for the breadth, depth and innovation of our approach to health care education. This generous donation allows us to advance our plans to establish a centre of excellence, with the goal of reaching new levels in our mandate to produce highly-skilled professionals who become an integral part of a forward-looking health care sector, which benefits everyone."

TD Community Giving: Making a Difference Together
Children’s health, literacy and education, and the environment are the three primary areas of focus for TD’s community giving. The major flagship programs within these areas are: TD Children’s Hospital Fund, TD Friends of the Environment Foundation and the TD Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup, TD Canadian Children’s Book Week, TD Canada Trust Scholarships for Community Leadership, and the TD Summer Reading Club. In addition, through the support of our customers and employees, TD is involved with a host of national, regional and local programs in support of diversity, arts and culture and other causes. In 2006, TD donated $33 million to more than 1,600 charities and not-for-profit organizations across Canada.

About Conestoga College
Conestoga College Institute of Technology and Advanced Learning is one of Canada's premier polytechnic institutes, with a comprehensive array of programs in health sciences, community services, engineering technology, information technology, business, skilled trades, media studies, professional studies and preparatory studies. For three consecutive years, Conestoga has led all Ontario colleges in graduate employment success. Conestoga is also Midwestern Ontario's largest source for part-time, career-related adult education courses and programs, as well as customized training services for business and industry. Conestoga's enrolment includes 8,000 full-time, 3,000 apprenticeship and 500 international students, plus 40,000 part-time registrants.

CONTACT: John Sawicki (Conestoga College), 519-748-5220, ext. 3336; Jennifer Martin (TD Bank Financial Group), 416-308-6473

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