New sliding compound mitre saws, routers and survey instruments will support TRU carpentry students, part of a $300,000 investment by the province in new industry-standard trades equipment.
Kamloops-North Thompson MLA Terry Lake and Kamloops-South Thompson MLA Todd Stone announced the funding on behalf of Advanced Education Minister Andrew Wilkinson during a visit to the university.
“Trades equipment funding at Thompson Rivers University will assist students by offering opportunities to gain hands-on experience using the same up-to-date equipment found on jobsites in the province,” Lake said.
The funding will go toward equipment for the carpentry, cook, mechanical, welding, automotive and millwright programs to assist students with hands-on learning opportunities and develop skills for in-demand careers.
TRU has received a total of $1.75 million since the launch of B.C.’s Skills for Jobs Blueprint toward the purchase of trades training equipment, as well as an additional $735,560 for 186 trades training seats to reduce waitlists.
“Thompson Rivers University is proud of our students and we are delighted today to, once again, be working with government to provide the tools they need. A career in the real-world requires a real-world education and; today’s announcement will help TRU deliver just that,” said TRU president Alan Shaver.
Government is investing $185 million in new trades training equipment and facilities through B.C.’s Skills for Jobs Blueprint to support students entering in-demand careers in the natural resource, industrial, marine, construction or hospitality sectors. For example, the B.C. Labour Market Outlook 2024 estimates that there will be up to 11,200 job openings for carpenters.
“Carpenters are hands-on learners, so having this new equipment will allow us to see and use these tools, rather than just read about them,” said Harley Russell, a second-year carpentry apprenticeship student. “Total Survey Stations are seen everywhere today on industrial and commercial projects, so it will be great to get a grasp of how we can use these new tools to make our work easier and more precise.”