Archive for July, 2011

NC Motive Power programs to benefit from GM Canada donation

David D’Amico, president of David Chevrolet, Corvette, Buick, GMC; Wayne Toth, Motive Power professor and program coordinator and Elizabeth Tait, motive power student all pose with three Saturn Vues recently donated to Niagara College by GM Canada.

Students in Niagara College’s motive power programs will have three new vehicles in their automotive lab thanks to a donation General Motors Canada.

GM Canada recently donated three Saturn Vues, valued at $15,000, for use in the labs of the Motive Power programs based at the Welland campus.

“General Motors has been very generous in supporting our programs with vehicles and engines that allow our students to have hands-on experience with the latest technology,” said Wayne Toth, Motive Power professor and program coordinator.

The vehicles will be used in the automotive programs to enhance the learning of technology in a variety of subjects including continuously variable transmissions, four-wheel drive technology, eco tech engines and electronic powertrain control module and body control module diagnosis.

“These vehicles, along with previous GM donations, allow our program to evolve with the latest technology on today’s vehicles,” said Toth.

In 2010, GM Canada donated 50 new V6 engines to the college’s motive power programs.

Niagara College’s motive power co-op programs have a regularly-updated curriculum that includes hybrid technology, alternative fuels, and new engine technologies.


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Accomplished engineer, Amilcare Ramella, leaves $250,000 to establish NC scholarships

Accomplished chemical engineer Amilcare Ramella, who passed away in June 2010, has left $250,000 to establish new scholarships for Niagara College students.

Ramella’s family was at Niagara College on July 12 to announce the donation, and tour Niagara College’s technology facilities. Ramella’s gift has been endowed and will be matched by the Ontario Trust for Student Support to create two new scholarship funds. The principal will remain untouched and the annual interest will be used to provide scholarships every year. The Remo and Ida Ramella Scholarship, named for Ramella’s parents, will provide four $2,500 scholarships annually for students from Welland entering technology programs. The Amilcare Ramella Scholarship will provide a $2,500 scholarship for a student from Welland entering a technology program, and will be renewed annually if the student maintains an 80 percent academic average.

“We’re very grateful for Mr. Ramella’s generosity,” said Sean Kennedy, Vice President of Student and External Relations and CEO of the Niagara College Foundation. “His legacy will create important opportunities for students who might otherwise be unable to pursue their dreams.”

Ramella was born on First Street in Welland. He received BSc and MSc degrees in chemical engineering from Queen’s University in Kingston before joining the research department of Mobil Corporation in New Jersey in 1948. He participated in many successful developments and commercializations of petroleum refining facilities, and made numerous technical contributions that resulted in improved performance of the catalytic reforming process during his career with Mobil. He retired as a research consultant in 1984, with more than 36 years of service, and returned to his hometown in 1987.

Ramella strongly believed in the value of higher education and in supporting others in achieving their goals. His relatives Fred and Joe Tonin, co-executors of his estate – noted how he wanted everyone, no matter what their circumstances, to have the opportunity to pursue post-secondary education.

“His parents were immigrant parents and realized the importance of education. He was the first one of our family to go to university and he was appreciative of that,” said Fred Tonin.  “He wanted to honour his parents and he wanted to give a chance to students in financial need to realize their dreams.”

Because he lived modestly with only a black-and-white television, and no computer – frequently visiting the Welland Library to research topics of interest – they never would have guessed that he had $1 million in funds to be donated to Niagara College, Brock University, Queen’s University and the Welland Library.  They also said that most people Ramella encountered as he lived out his retirement in Welland were not aware of his education level and professional accomplishments.

“They just saw a humble man who walked the streets and talked to him,” said Tonin. “When they read his obituary, they were shocked to find out had these degrees and travelled the world.”

Fred Tonin, Joe Tonin, both cousins of Amilcare Ramella, with Sean Kennedy, Vice-President of Student and External Relations, and Dr. Adel Esayed, Chair of Technology Studies

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Niagara College is shining the spotlight on its Welland supporters.

Picture from left to right - Dolores Fabiano, Welland/Pelham Chamber of Commerce, Peter Allen, Giant FM, Ross Peever, Welland Hydro-Electric System Corporation, Marilyn Johnson, Lakeside Steel Corporation, Anna Olson, Building Futures Campaign Co-chair, Peter Scott, Rotary Club of Welland, Sean Kenneday, Niagara College Foundation CEO, Joe Petozzi, Lakeside Steel Corporation

On May 18, the college hosted a Donor Recognition Reception in honour of some of the local contributors to its Building Futures Campaign. Six organizations were thanked for their generous donations including:

$20,000 from Welland Hydro-Electric System Corporation (represented by Ross Peever) to establish the Welland Hydro-Electric System Corporation Award;

$13,371 from Giant FM (represented by Peter Allen) to establish the Wellport Broadcasting Bursary;

$10,000 from the Welland/Pelham Chamber of Commerce (represented by Dolores Fabiano) to fund the Welland/Pelham Chamber of Commerce Business Award;

$2,500 from the Rotary Club of Welland (represented by Peter Scott) for a scholarship for the Educational Assistant – Special Needs Support program; and

$1,000 from Lakeside Steel Corporation (represented by Marilyn Johnson and Joe Petozzi) to fund a student award for the Electrical Engineering Technician program.

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MT Bellies Fund Athletic Centre Score Table.

On May 18, the college hosted a Donor Recognition Reception in honour of some of the local Welland contributors to its Building Futures Campaign.  Recognized during this reception was John and Rebecca Clark from MT Bellies who provided $20,000 to fund a state-of the-art score table for the new Athletic Centre.

Pictured from left to right: Rebecca and John Clark, MT Bellies, Anna Olson, Building Futures Campaign Co-chair, Collin Stachura, Executive Vice President Niagara College Student Administrative Council

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