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Partnership affords access to language training for newcomers to Canada in Thompson

March 8, 2018

RRC Language Training CentreNewcomers to Canada living in Thompson now have access to English language training, through a partnership with Red River College and University College of the North (UCN).

The new training is part of the expansion of RRC’s Language Training Centre in Winnipeg, which helps immigrant and international students improve their English skills in order to enrol in College programs, gain employment or become more independent in their everyday lives.

Over the past year, the LTC has expanded to satellite sites in Arborg, Steinbach, Selkirk and Thompson – areas identified as having the most need.

“We’ve welcomed about 200 people to Thompson in the last year, and many of the newcomers have valuable skills to offer – the only barrier keeping them from the kind of job they’re qualified for is language,” says David Williamson, Acting Dean of Access at UCN.

“Partnering with Red River College means we are giving our newcomers access to knowledge and resources that will help them confidently integrate into our community.”

As of today, there have been 65 applications to the new LTC in Thompson, while 48 students have already begun their training.

“What this partnership allows us to do is provide students with the language and communication skills they need in order to achieve their professional and educational goals,” says Anna Janik- Kelly, program manager for the LTCs in Thompson and Arborg.

“We want to help them become thriving members of the Northern community, who can use their skills and experience to enrich and strengthen the workforce, and help fill some of the labour market gaps.”

Through the partnership in Thompson, UCN is providing space for classes and an administrative assistant, storage, laptops and access to printing and photocopying — all of which are essential to helping the program run smoothly.

Classes administered by the LTC are five months in length, though students can continue on if they feel they need additional training. The programs are provided at no charge to students, with costs covered by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada.