The Hon. Kathryn McGarry, Ontario’s Minister of Transportation and MPP for Cambridge, visited the city’s Gaslight District on Friday, February 23, to announce the province’s investment of $1.3 million in applied research projects at Conestoga that will connect students with businesses to tackle R&D challenges and launch innovative new products and services.
The Hon. Kathryn McGarry visited the Gaslight District in Cambridge on Friday, February 23, to announce the province’s investment of $1.3 million in applied research projects at Conestoga.
Conestoga is one of 22 colleges across the province to receive funding for projects supported through the Colleges Applied Research and Development Fund (CARDF).
“Connecting businesses and colleges is critical to keeping Ontario’s economy strong and growing,” McGarry said. “At the same time, it offers students real-world, hands-on education and experience to ready them for success in a time of rapid economic change.”
The projects at Conestoga will enhance technology adoption, support innovation and increased productivity, and contribute to a more secure and sustainable future for our community. They include:
Secure and Sustainable Lifecycle Technologies Initiative (SSLTI) - a range of projects that address the challenges of cybersecurity in an increasingly digital world as well as the growing need for efficient and effective e-waste recycling. CARDF is providing an investment of $1 million to the initiative through the College Strategic Sector / Cluster / Technology Platform program.
Enhancing Technology Adoption - Conestoga will work with a range of companies across the Waterloo - GTA Innovation Corridor to provide technology solutions for industry challenges related to Smart Manufacturing, Food Processing, Supply Chain Management, and Engineering & IT. CARDF is providing an investment of $250,000 through the Stream 2 College Voucher for Technology Adoption program.
Supporting Innovation and Increased Productivity - In collaboration with industry partners, Conestoga will develop applied research solutions for real-world needs. Three projects to date are being supported through a total investment of $59,500 provided by the CARDF Stream 3 College Voucher for Innovation and Productivity program.
The funding provided by the province is matched by industry and community partners, resulting in a total research investment of $2.6 million. Much of the research will be conducted in Conestoga’s new Applied Research Hub that will open in Spring 2018 in the Gaslight District in Cambridge.
“We greatly appreciate this investment in real-world research that will drive innovation and economic growth across our community and throughout Ontario while helping students develop the skills and knowledge they need to launch successful futures,” said Conestoga President John Tibbits.
In addition to addressing the needs of local business, industry and community, applied research at Conestoga and Ontario’s other colleges provides opportunities for students to gain real-world experience as they prepare for successful careers.
Conestoga is now ranked among Canada’s top 25 research colleges, and in the top 10 for research revenue growth. In 2016-17, more than 2,000 students and over 165 faculty and staff were engaged in applied research projects.