Conestoga news

September 23, 2011 12:27 PM

Canadian Immigration Integration Program (CIIP) announces Conestoga as its new Southern Ontario Focal Point Partner

Conestoga was named the new southern Ontario focal point partner for the Canadian Immigration Integration Program (CIIP) as a result of a submission by the School of Career and Academic Access in February, 2011.

CIIP was initially launched as a pilot project in 2007 to address the problem of the number of competent immigrants who remain unemployed. The Government of Canada funded the Association of Canadian Community Colleges (ACCC) to develop and implement CIIP as a pre-arrival program to help prepare newcomers for economic integration while still in their country of origin. CIIP is now a three-year program (2010-2013), funded by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC).

Between the Conestoga Language Institute and the School of Career and Academic Access, Conestoga provides a range of programs and services that assist immigrants with the unique challenges they face. Over the past ten years, the College has been developing and delivering a variety of English as a second language programs and employment and career services to approximately 300 international students a year and 1,000 newcomers. This new role will increase the visibility of Conestoga College and southern Ontario as a destination for prospective immigrants in India, China, the Philippines and the United Kingdom, where CIIP currently has field offices. It will also enhance our partnerships in the local communities by serving as a referral source for other immigrant serving agencies.

George Brown College had been Ontario’s sole focal point partner until a decision was made to expand. Conestoga will now serve southern Ontario and Algonquin College will serve northern and eastern Ontario, effective April 1, 2011.