Volume 44 Issue No. 1 May 30, 2011 www.fsu.ca/interrobang/
CREDIT: FANSHAWE COLLEGE
Fanshawe officially opened its new Centre for Applied Transportation Technologies on May 13. The new Centrewill accommodate 1,500 students who are seeking job-ready credentials in trades and technologies that supportthe transportation industry.
On May 13, Fanshawe College proudly unveiled the newly com- pleted Centre for AppliedTransportation Technologies, aninnovative new facility located at1764 Oxford St. E., not far fromthe main London campus.The CATT is a state-of-the-art building equipped with a remark-able list of features for 1,500 stu-dents in the newly renamed Schoolof Transportation Technology.Construction of the structure wasfunded by two government grantstotaling $31.8 million. Classes began in April 2011.“In April, we finished off pro-grams that we started at the maincampus down the road,” said RobGorrie, Chair of the School of Transportation Technology. “Our students left the old facility andstarted classes here to finish off their term on April 4. It was a mas-sive move to pull off, but when thestudents walked in, it was a pretty big wow factor for them.”The grand opening on May 13 brought to a close this latest chap-ter in the history of the college,one that began with a ceremonialgroundbreaking back in November 2009. Now completed, the build-ing will provide opportunities for students to receive credentials intrades and technologies relevant tothe transportation industry, likethe new Avionics Technician pro-gram, in addition to the family of courses currently offered.“Fanshawe is well regarded andsought after for training of allsorts, certainly transportationtraining,” said Leanne Perreault,Manager of CorporateCommunications with the college.“This facility takes us to a wholenew level. This is a state-of-the-art building; it’s got all sorts of envi-ronmental measures that are amaz-ing and the classrooms, equipmentand everything else are top-notch.It puts us right at the top of thechart.”The CATT — a 148,000 squarefoot facility with 16 classrooms,13 labs, seven shops and supportspaces like cafeterias and studentlounges — is also Fanshawe’sgreenest property to date.In addition to an impressive listof sustainable measures undertak-en to ensure the new buildingleaves as little a footprint on theenvironment as possible, the building boasts 48,000 square feetof vegetated green roofing andsolar-powered GPS tracking sky-lights to promote natural light inits shops.The new building — premier inCanada, said Gorrie — enjoyed anopening weekend with over athousand visitors from May 12 to14. Regular classes continuethrough the summer, and a pro- jected 500 to 600 students willresume full-time study in the fall.
New building is the CATT’s meow
Fanshawe College’s Board of Governors recently approved theschool’s 2011/12 Strategic Plan, adetailed annual account of the projects, spending and expansionof the school over a period of fiveyears.Traditionally included in theStrategic Plan are charts outliningthe growth of the school, trends inregistration and projects bothdrafted and underway. For stu-dents, the approval of the Planrepresents a continued investmentof funding intended to directly benefit their opportunities oncampus and off.Much of the college’s budget — approximately $185.6 million for the coming year — will be allo-cated to general operations. Of particular interest are the detailsoutlined in the capital projects plan, an account of the approxi-mately $34.8 million the collegehas to spend on improvements andconstruction around the school.In the Strategic Plan, a capital project is defined as one of con-siderable expense, involvingacquiring land, the construction of a new building or the renovationor renewal of an existing one. Thecompletion of the new Centre for Applied TransportationTechnologies marks the end of one such capital project, and thedecommissioning and imminentdemolition of the current CBuilding represents such a projectin the future.Additionally, the capital fundswill continue to be used toenhance learning spaces andmethods for students by way of renovating classrooms and labs,upgrading food services and keep-ing some cash free in order for thecollege to be able to jump on potential property opportunitiesfor the proposed new campus indowntown London.Further, there are plans outlinedinvolving the continued develop-ment of online portals for collegeemployees and students alike,with a focus on enabling contentto be created and shared entirelyonline. The plan is to lead the wayin developments and set an exam- ple for all colleges in the provinceand across the country.“Our mission is to prepare stu-dents for success in jobs that areavailable in our regional econo-my,” said Dr. Howard Rundle,President of Fanshawe College.“Despite the recent economic situ-ation, Ontario’s looming skillsshortage is a reality. Our new pro-grams and capital projects areaimed at addressing that shortage,and making sure every studentwho wants a college education hasan opportunity to achieve one.”
The City of Woodstock hasoffered Fanshawe College a build-ing in its downtown core to aid inthe school’s expansion. The build-ing, extended to the college byWoodstock Mayor Pat Sobieski, islocated at 449 Dundas St., just over two kilometers from the existingcampus on Finkle Street.Dr. Howard Rundle, Presidentof Fanshawe College, addressedthe matter in his spring staff meet-ing in May, indicating that the ges-ture was likely a result of twothings: the proposal for the expan-sion of the current campus beingturned down for funding, and theannouncement of plans to expandthe London campus into the down-town vicinity.“The Mayor of Woodstock picked up the London Free Press,”recalled Rundle at the staff meet-ing. “He heard what London wasdoing, and suddenly we get a callsaying, ‘How would you like a building in downtownWoodstock?’ ... and I said, ‘Areyou sure?’”The offer has been met withsome controversy, as the buildingitself has undergone renovationtotaling nearly $3.5 million fromthe federal and provincial govern-ments to convert it into an artgallery. The city indicated that itwill see dual use as a gallery andeducational space for the college.If approved, the building will provide some 24,000 square feet inwhich the college can expand.Although the deal is still in itsinfancy, full-time study could begin in the new space as early asthis fall, depending on negotia-tions.At present, dialogue between theBoard of Directors at FanshaweCollege and Woodstock CityCouncil is far from concluded. The building, located downtown a mere block away from City Hall, would benefit greatly from the investmentfrom Fanshawe College, enablingthe completion of its restorationsand use of its two uppermostfloors.Woodstock City Council sup- ported the offer in light of the boost that such a cooperative effortcould mean for the downtowncore. Recent projections suggestedthat in such a dual role, the build-ing could be responsible for attracting better than 80,000 visi-tors to the downtown core per year.In 2010, Fanshawe College wasdenied a federal infrastructuregrant for the expansion of theexisting campus, located in theWoodstock District CommunityComplex. The need to expandarose from the diminishing of physical space at the campus,which has seen enrollmentincrease to approximately 300 full-time and 3,300 part-time students.
Fanshawe College presidentHoward Rundle
A heritage building constructed in 1879, originally destined to become anart gallery in Woodstock, Ont., could be home to a new Fanshawe campus.
Woodstock offersbuilding to Fanshawe