Algonquin College partners to create new business degree for tradespeople

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Ottawa’s Algonquin College has joined forces with George Brown College and Mohawk College to launch a four-year honours degree in business administration that focuses on people working in skilled trades.

The colleges will deliver the first-of-its-kind degree in September 2022, with all instruction provided virtually. The program, approved by the Ontario Ministry of Colleges and Universities, is intended for people working in the skilled trades who are looking to grow their own businesses, take on greater responsibilities or pursue management careers.

“The launch of the honours degree trades management program is another indicator of the critical role Algonquin College and our partner colleges at George Brown and Mohawk play in supporting Ontario’s skilled labour force and economy,” said Algonquin College president and CEO Claude Brulé in a news release. 

“Trades-related entrepreneurs are a significant economic force, and this program will help them navigate the increasingly complex challenges of operating and growing their businesses during a time of immense opportunity, all with the flexibility to learn based on their own timetables.”

Julia Fortey, associate chair of the Algonquin Centre for Construction Excellence, says the new degree addresses the critical shortage of skilled workers in Canada by enhancing talent that already exists in the trades industry.

“By offering the course material fully online, students are given the opportunity for more flexibility in their learning and it addresses work-life balance, which is a barrier to many skilled trades workers accessing up-skilling opportunities,” Fortey said in an email to OBJ. “The program acknowledges the extensive work experience and commitment to the field these students have demonstrated by allowing advanced standing in all pathways offered.”

The degree will concentrate on business administration, managerial skills, accounting, project management, leadership, marketing, communication and applied research competencies, combined with 420 hours of structured work.

Applicants who already possess a trades credential, including apprenticeship and journey persons, may be able to do two years of study to complete the degree.

To learn more, visit https://tradesmanagementdegree.ca/.