Canadian Plastics

Training resources grow at all levels

By Bob MacKenzie   



The opportunities in Canada to obtain plastics-industry training cover the entire gamut, from high school programs to post-graduate degrees.In Atlantic Canada, the Cumberland Campus of Nova Scotia Com...

The opportunities in Canada to obtain plastics-industry training cover the entire gamut, from high school programs to post-graduate degrees.

In Atlantic Canada, the Cumberland Campus of Nova Scotia Community College now provides a one-year certificate program in plastics processes, which includes injection molding and extrusion, plus training on how to install and operate equipment. The program is the first of its kind in the Atlantic provinces.

The Saint John campus of the New Brunswick community college (NBCC) system offers some plastics-related components in its engineering technology programs. According to Michel Laroche, director of the Edmundston Campus of NBCC, the college is working with the local plastics industry to offer a customized program that will include training for injection molding machine operators. This program is expected to be available later this year.

Pierre Guimont, general manager of Plasticomptences in Montral, an organization that promotes and coordinates training and human resources for Qubec’s plastics processing industry, says that four Qubec high schools offer vocational training in the set up and operation of plastics processing machines. Others offer programs in composite material molding. In addition, two CEGEPS (similar to community colleges in other provinces) offer plastics-related programs, while the Centre Sectoriel des Plastiques at Saint-Damien, a vocational training school, teaches students how to install and set up molding machines.

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Ontario is the mold-and-die-making centre of the country, with programs being offered at Durham College, Georgian College, Mohawk College, Seneca College, Sheridan College and St. Clair College. One notable exception is the Canadian Plastics Training Centre (CPTC) at Humber College, which offers programs mostly in plastics processing, with some components of mold and die design. The CPTC is prepared to deliver its programs anywhere they are needed. Courses have been delivered as far afield as Hong Kong.

In Western Canada, training opportunities are available in Manitoba, Alberta and British Columbia. Red River College of Applied Arts, Science and Technology in Winnipeg offers a Tool and Die Maker program, in cooperation with the Manitoba Department of Education and Training.

Northern Alberta Institute of Technology (NAIT) offers a two-year program in plastics engineering technology, which includes plastics tool and die design, mold production and instruction on numerous plastics processes.

The British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT) and its associated Plastics Industry Training Center offer diploma and associate certificate programs in plastic technology, and the Centre will custom design programs to suit the needs of industry.

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