Conestoga news

September 18, 2013 2:52 PM

Conestoga student wins international award

Conestoga student Alita Jones has won the second annual International Facility Management Association (IFMA) Foundation's International Student of the Year award for 2013.

Jones, a recent graduate of the four-year Bachelor of Applied Technology Architecture - Project and Facility Management (APFM) program, will be presented with the prestigious award at the annual IFMA World Workplace Facility Conference and Expo to be held in Philadelphia in early October.

Formed in 1990, the IFMA Foundation supports educational and research opportunities for facilities management (FM) students and professionals worldwide. In 2013, the Foundation will award over $185,000 (US) in facility management scholarships to highly qualified FM students.

DSC_5584.jpg Chosen as the award winner, in part, for her dedication to the field of facility management, Jones has been involved in Conestoga's IFMA chapter, the only student-run IFMA chapter in Canada. "This is the first time a Canadian student has won the award," said Jones. "So not only is this a big win for me but also a great reflection on the APFM program at Conestoga."

Conestoga's APFM program is Canada’s only post-secondary program to be accredited by IFMA. According to faculty member Jim Bechard, the partnership ensures a quality education for students in the program.

"The objective of the accreditation is to ensure that Conestoga is providing a quality facility management education," said Bechard. "This benefits students by giving them a breadth of education so when they graduate they are employable in a variety of fields."

Over her four years in the program, Jones has had opportunities to build her experience through her co-op placements.

She described her most recent co-op placement at Sun Life as particularly rewarding, saying:"I had the chance to gain real corporate and commercial experience and work with a great team of people.”.

Jones recently completed her four years of study at Conestoga and will graduate from the APFM program with Distinction. She has several job leads and is confident she will begin work in the near future.