First year applicants up at LLC

By Geoff Lee

August 23, 2016 12:00 AM

Lakeland College president Alice Wainwright-Stewart, right, is pictured in this file photo chatting with energy students at the Lloydminster campus. Fall classes at the Lloyd and Vermilion campuses resume in full on Sept. 6.

Fall enrolment at Lakeland College will be at the top end the of teeter totter with the economy still on the downside.
This year’s head count covering the Vermilion and Lloydminster campuses currently stands about 3,700 students.
That’s more than last year with final apprenticeship students to be tallied by mid September.
“We’re looking great—I’m feeling very good about this upcoming year, there a buzz of excitement,” said Lakeland president, Alice Wainwright-Stewart.
“We have another healthy bunch of students coming in that I am looking forward to being able to spend some time with.”
It’s her theory that when the economy’s down, people go back to school including.
The one exception this fall, said Wainwright-Stewart, is trades apprentice programs with a weakened demand for tradespeople by industry in Western Canada.
‘We don’t have our numbers there yet, but we expect a decrease in our intake in welders in particular,” she said.
“We won’t know the final numbers by mid September because they start on the sixth, but give or take two weeks, people are coming and going.”
Any loss in apprentice enrolment will be made up by a 17 per cent increase in the number of first year applicants for full time programs from 1,005 last year to 1,180 this fall.
Of the full count of 3,740 students 1,960 are full time students.
“It’s a good news story for everyone,“said Wainwright-Stewart about the higher enrolment.
“I know that it’s not so nice when our economy takes this dip, but hopefully with the added people coming in businesses will find that helps them a little bit.”
Online programs are experiencing the most demand with an increase of 173 students from 2015.
The next highest is agricultural sciences with 304 registered students this fall compared to 265 a year ago.
“Our agricultural program has continued to grow for the last six or seven years,” said Wainwright-Stewart.
Enrolment is also up in human services courses such as early childhood studies to 102 students, 22 more than in 2015.
New this year is a community mental health certificate as credit program along with the reactivation of the Heavy Oil Operations Technician or HOOT program after a one year hiatus.
A total of 24 HOOT students started class at the Lloydminster Energy Centre on Aug. 15 with most other programs kicking off Sept. 6.
The Vermilion campus has also reactivated the Bachelor of Applied Emergency Services program with students registered from all across the country.
“That program really covers all of Canada in terms of educating fire chiefs and emergency services,” explained Wainwright-Stewart.
She said four or five years ago that course drew a whole cohort from Australia.
“So that’s a really good news story of having that come back,” she said.
Lakeland has also hired Mary-Lou MacMillan as vice president of academics, executive assistant and Glenice Grover as manager of student life, a newly created position.
In other news, the countdown is underway to the Rustlers’ golf tournament on Aug. 30.
“That’s another opportunity for scholarship funding,” said Wainwright-Stewart.

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