TIMMINS, ON: Northern College applauds the new accelerated training program for personal support workers (PSWs) the provincial government announced, as it will produce a significant increase in the PSW training delivered at Ontario’s colleges.
“This is a major step in filling the demand for more personal support workers,” said Linda Franklin, the president and CEO of Colleges Ontario. “This will strengthen the quality of care throughout Ontario and bolster the fight against COVID-19.”
The Ontario government announced funding today for an accelerated program that will cover students’ tuition and other expenses. The program will start in the spring of this year and allow participants to graduate with full credentials within six months.
Applications will begin being accepted in early March. The added enrolment is expected to result in over 8,000 PSW graduates by this Fall.
“As post-secondary institutions, it is crucial for us to monitor pressures on the workforce and respond accordingly, tailoring programs to meet demand,” stated Northern College President and CEO, Dr. Audrey J. Penner. “It is encouraging to see such robust support from the Provincial Government specifically designed to help meet that demand. Personal Support Workers are an essential workforce and we’ve seen this only increase during the global pandemic. Northern College is committed to offering potential students the chance to build a career in this important field of healthcare.”
The accelerated program allows students to fulfil the program requirements more quickly by increasing the number of study hours per week.
It will use a hybrid model that combines online learning with in-person practical experience. Students in the program will complete courses online as well as participate in laboratory classes available at the colleges and in care settings.
“Students in this accelerated program will be available to volunteer at long-term care homes and other settings for their placements early in the program and will also be available for paid work placements after three months, further supporting the healthcare field that awaits additional support,” said Sarah Campbell, Dean of Health Sciences and Emergency Services at Northern. “Graduates will enter the workforce at the end of six months, compared to the standard PSW programs at colleges that take eight months to complete, accelerating their workforce readiness,” she added.
“We’re proud of the excellent quality of care delivered by our college graduates,” Franklin said. “We were pleased to collaborate with the government to enhance the support for so many of our most vulnerable citizens.”
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