Assiniboine welcoming students, remotely and on campus
August 31, 2020
Assiniboine Community College is welcoming new and returning students through a blend of on-campus and remote learning environments as many of its programs resume over the next two weeks. While the COVID-19 pandemic has brought with it many challenges, the college has spent the summer months preparing for the safe return of students. Beyond the physical changes to campus, program staff have been working hard to orient students and staff to changes in the environment to support blended learning.
“College programs are often characterized by their ‘hands-on’ approach to learning inside labs, shops, kitchens and fields,” said Dr. Deanna Rexe, Vice-President Academic at Assiniboine. “We’re preparing students to be job-ready upon graduation, and so we must strike the right balance between teaching and learning from a distance, and bringing students on campus for those portions of their programs that require access to campus facilities and technology.”
With COVID-19, Assiniboine anticipates its overall enrolment will not be as high as previous academic years, with around 3,500 students in regular and distance programs. Thousands more are expected in community-based and Continuing Studies programs, which begin and finish throughout the year.
International enrolment this fall has taken a dip, attributed to the global environment in response to COVID-19. The college anticipates the decline could be as many as 100 students compared to this same time last year. Programs which have traditionally seen waitlists continue to, such as Practical Nursing, Power Engineering, and Human Resource Management.
“September is when we see our largest intake of new students each year; however, it’s not the only starting point for many learners,” said Rexe. “With program delivery sites throughout Manitoba, and programs beginning throughout the year across our campuses, we continue to offer student flexibility in where and when they start their post-secondary journey with us.”
The college has five campuses across the province: three in Brandon, one in Dauphin and one in Winnipeg and delivers programs in dozens of communities across Manitoba each year.