Okanagan College opens doors for Canadian vets, reservists

National program enlisted locally to help Canadian Armed Forces vets and reservists upgrade their education to find new jobs.

  • Apr. 10, 2016 12:00 p.m.

Okanagan College is enlisting in a national program that helps Canadian Armed Forces veterans and reservists accelerate their education as they transition to other employment.

The college has just signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Canada Company, a charitable, non-partisan organization that serves to engage, educate and build ties between community and business organizations and the Canadian Military.

The charity’s goal “is to ensure that the men and women in our Canadian Armed Forces receive the widest support, care and recognition that they deserve.”

The MoU means Okanagan College joins other Canadian post-secondary institutions that are working with Canada Company under the Military Employment Transition (MET) program to provide vets and reservists with recognition for training and experience they have received as they take credential programs at the institutions. It means they may be able to fast-track their way to a credential – an important link to military members’ and veterans’ successful transition to second careers

“This opens a door for military veterans and personnel to get credit for prior learning as they enter programs at Okanagan College,” explained  Andrew Hay, Okanagan College’s vice-president education. “It is a superb way to take what they have learned in their careers with the Canadian Armed Forces and transition into careers in the private sector.”

The college joins BCIT, NAIT, Fanshawe College, Eastern College and Marine Institute as participants in the program.

“We’ve already had some interest from a reservist in Kelowna when he learned we were becoming a part of this initiative,” noted Teresa Kisilevich, an associate dean of Okanagan College’s School of Business and a key player in the college’s involvement.

“We’re pleased at Okanagan College’s decision to sign on to the MET program,” explained Canada Company president Angela Mondou. “

Okanagan College offers an array of programs that veterans and reservists are interested in, from business administration to trades, to engineering technology programs. Many of our vets have undertaken significant training in the military that transfers directly to the business world. Being able to have their prior learning recognized will make credential achievement and transition to employment that much easier.”

For more information or to learn more about the program, veterans and reservists can contact Kisilevich at 250-762-5445, ext. 4393, or tkisilevich@okanagan.bc.ca

Okanagan College also currently has ties to the Canadian Armed Forces through its Electronic Engineering Technology diploma program, which is accredited by the national military, meaning that students can apply to the Armed Forces and be paid while achieving their diploma at OC, with guaranteed employment on successful completion.

 

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