Ontario investing $13 million to help colleges tackle R&D challenges

reza moridi

The Ontario government has announced that it is investing in 61 projects across the province’s colleges to launch new tech products and services that will improve education.

The funding, which totals $13 million, was spread across 22 colleges. The funding was distributed through the Colleges Applied Research and Development Fund, an investment announced in January 2017 of $20 million over three years administered through the Ontario Centres of Excellence. The goal of the program is to increase industry and post-secondary collaborations, provide experiential learning opportunities for students, and align colleges with the needs of companies and strategic sectors.

“Ontario’s college students are bright, ambitious and ready to take on real world challenges. When students have the opportunity to apply their education in practical ways, they’re even better equipped to participate in the skills-based economy we’re building in the province,” said Mitzie Hunter, Minister of Advanced Education and Skills Development. “These projects will encourage students to explore their full potential, immerse themselves in industries and help us keep Ontario’s R&D sector competitive.”

Announced at Sheridan College in Oakville, Moridi called out a couple of projects taking place at the campus, including developing computer-generated characters with human-like qualities that can communicate in real-time using natural human facial expressions, speech and gestures, for use in healthcare education. The college will also launch a project allowing students to collaborate with industry in optimize the design of a leading refrigeration manufacturer’s new industrial beverage cooling unit.

“Our province needs talent to continue to sustain its growing innovation ecosystem. Investing in applied research and development is a step towards a brighter and more prosperous future for our province,” said Minister of Research, Innovation and Science Reza Moridi. “By bringing together colleges and the R&D sector, we’re creating opportunities for our students and ensuring they are ready for the jobs of tomorrow.”

Photo via Ontario Centres of Excellence

Jessica Galang

Jessica Galang

Jessica Galang is BetaKit's News Editor. Follow her on Twitter @jessicagalangg or send her pitches to jessica.galang@betakit.com.