Nov 09, 2020
Shannon Van Leenen
Media Relations Officer
Bow Valley College to open new location in Okotoks Arts & Learning Campus
Bow Valley College is excited to announce it will be expanding in Okotoks by relocating its regional campus to the Okotoks Arts and Learning Campus (OALC). The college expects to welcome students to the new space starting in January 2022. Bow Valley College currently offers career programming and Open Studies courses, and has had presence in the community for more than two decades.
“We have outgrown our space in Okotoks, so we have been searching for something suitable for some time,” says Leah Wack, Dean, Regional Stewardship at Bow Valley College. At just under 6,000 square feet, the new campus will replace the college’s present location, which is 1,500 square feet. An area inside the existing library in the OALC will undergo renovations to include four classrooms, room for student flex seating, and office space.
“We have built a solid reputation in the region for the programs that we offer. We have waitlists for our programs, but our growth has been limited by our space.” says Wack. The most popular programs at the Okotoks regional campus are the Practical Nursing Diploma and Early Childhood Education and Development Certificate. “This expansion is terrific news for the entire region south of Calgary. It will allow us to offer more programming, which means more students will be able to stay in their community – or close to it – to earn a high-quality post-secondary education.”
Regional growth also achieves one of the strategic goals set out by the Minister of Advanced Education, Demetrios Nicolaides, in Alberta 2030: Building Skills for Jobs. The system-wide review currently underway calls for an increase in access to post-secondary education and encourages a broader range of students to pursue higher education.
“Our regional campuses offer a blend of in-class and online learning, giving students the option of earning a diploma or certificate that is both convenient and flexible,” says Dr. Misheck Mwaba, President and CEO, Bow Valley College. He adds, “We will incorporate new technology in this new Okotoks campus, which will improve how we deliver education there.”
The college will join other tenants in the new $18.3 million OALC including Christ the Redeemer Catholic Schools, and Foothills School Division.
“The Town is thrilled to have Bow Valley College on board as partner in this project. Enhanced post-secondary education is of utmost importance and being able to offer that to our residents and the region, especially in a new and improved facility, is significant,” says Town of Okotoks Mayor Bill Robertson.
“This is a transformational project for Okotoks that will create a strong anchor for the downtown area. Creating a shared, vibrant space will enrich the community, while aligning with Okotoks Town Council’s strategic directions, most notably, fostering economic vitality, capitalizing on partnerships, building quality infrastructure, and managing community growth,” says Robertson.