Archive for October, 2011

Rankin’s $1 million gift the largest in NC history

Niagara College announced what is now the largest gift in its history today. Tom Rankin, CEO of Rankin Construction, Inc. and Rankin Renewable Power, Inc. is donating a $1-million leadership gift to Niagara College’s Building Futures Campaign.

In recognition of Mr. Rankin’s generosity and leadership, the Niagara College’s Technology Building has been renamed “The Rankin Technology Centre.”

“Through its Master Plan, Niagara College has transformed itself, and greatly enhanced its ability to support industry and innovation in Niagara, and created a sense of renewal in our community,” said Rankin. “We’re very pleased to play a leadership role in supporting this transformation.”

“We’re very grateful to Tom Rankin and his family for this generous gift,” said Steve Hudson, Acting President, Niagara College. “Tom Rankin is a true leader in our community whose business achievements and contributions to life in Niagara are tremendous. The gift that we’ve received today greatly enhances our ability to provide state-of-the-art learning environments that support our integrated approach to applied learning.”

The Building Futures campaign supports NC’s $90-million master plan which includes $88 million in new and expanded facilities and $2 million for scholarships, bursaries and applied research. The facilities portion of the project includes a significant expansion to The Rankin Technology Centre. The 120,000 square-foot complex, comprised of both new and renovated space, is home to the college’s Technology programs – from engineering to skilled trades. It features classrooms and labs with the latest state-of-the-art equipment, including a welding lab, drafting room, materials lab, and a 10,000-square-foot ‘big bay’ where two-storey homes can be constructed. Environmental features are present throughout with solar panels shading windows, its own geothermal heating and cooling system, and a wind turbine in the courtyard – all providing a ‘living laboratory’ for students.

On the Welland campus, the project also includes the construction of the new Athletic Centre and Applied Health Institute, and the Library and Learning Commons expansion; while, in Niagara-on-the-Lake, it led to the new Wine + Visitor Education Centre and Teaching Brewery, as well as a Culinary Skills expansion. The project creates more than 1,700 new spaces in programs where labour is in high demand in Niagara – including skilled trades and technology.

“Our ability to pursue such ambitious and exciting projects depends very much on the support of different levels of government, and our business, industry and community partners,” said Len Crispino, Chair of the Niagara College Board of Governors. “We at Niagara College very fortunate for the generous support of a business and community leader like Tom Rankin.”


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The Ontario Paper Thorold Foundation has committed $40,000 to the Building Futures Campaign

From left: Dan McNiven, Trustee The Ontario Paper Thorold Foundation; Bob Watson, Secretary, Niagara College Foundation Board; Ron Hartle, Trustee, The Ontario Paper Thorold Foundation; Sean Kennedy, CEO Niagara College Foundation and Acting Vice President Academic; Ben Cecil, Dean of Environment, Media and Technology Division; and Gordon Hunchak, Acting Vice President Student and External Relations.

The Ontario Paper Thorold Foundation has committed $40,000 to the Building Futures Campaign to be used to help fund the Technology Centre expansion at the Welland Campus.  This donation completes the group’s $100,000 pledge, of which $60,000 was committed earlier to establish The Ontario Paper Thorold Foundation Scholarship, which supports students in Environmental programs.

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Welland Hydro-Electric System Corp. Donates Scholarship for Renewable Energies Technician Program

From left: Ross Peever, President and CEO, Welland Hydro Electric System Corp.; Bob Watson, Secretary, Niagara College Foundation Board; and Ben Cecil, Dean of Environment, Media and Technology Division.

Welland Hydro-Electric System Corp. made a $20,000 donation to the Building Futures Campaign to establish an endowed award. The donation will be matched by the Ontario Trust for Student Support. This scholarship is awarded to a student in the new Renewable Energies Technician program, who lives In Welland and graduated from a high school in the city.

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TD Bank Group commits $150,000 to Niagara College

Pictured left to right: Steve Hudson, Acting President, Niagara College; David Kissick, District Vice-President, TD Commercial Banking; David Drosky, Manager TD Commercial Banking; Sean Kennedy, Niagara College Acting Vice-President Academic and CEO of the Niagara College Foundation; Jon Ogryzlo, Dean, Canadian Food and Wine Institute, Niagara College; and Coby Hawkins, District Vice-President, TD Canada Trust gathered at Niagara College's Niagara-on-the-Lake campus Tuesday, as TD announced a significant investment to support student learning at the college.

TD Bank Group (TD) has committed $150,000 toward Niagara College’s Wine Visitor + Education Centre at the Niagara-on-the-Lake Campus.
Completed in 2009, the Wine Visitor + Education Centre is part of Niagara College’s Master Plan, which includes significant expansions and the construction of new buildings at both major campuses.
As a key component of Niagara College’s Canadian Food and Wine Institute, the Wine Visitor + Education Centre (WVEC) supports Niagara College’s role as a leader in wine education and is home to the Niagara College Teaching Winery – Canada’s only commercial teaching winery. The WVEC is a unique facility that serves as an educational resource for students, the public and industry, and supports applied research in wine business, oenology and viticulture.
“Niagara College is very pleased that TD is making this significant investment to support student learning and success, and the wine industry,” said Sean Kennedy, CEO of the Niagara College Foundation and Acting Vice President Academic.
“We are thrilled to partner with Niagara College and help provide access to continued education and learning,” said David Kissick, District Vice President, TD Commercial Banking, Niagara Region. “Niagara College is home to Canada’s only commercial teaching winery and to support specialized studies like this for students is beneficial to the future of our youth and the overall industry in Niagara.”
A portion of this gift will establish the TD Scholarship, which will be endowed and matched by the provincial government’s Ontario Trust for Student Support program. The annual income will be used to provide scholarships for students in Niagara College’s Wine and Viticulture Studies programs.
TD’s gift brings Niagara College closer to its $16.5 million campaign goal in support of the $90 million Master Plan, which includes $88 million for buildings, equipment and learning resources, and $2 million for scholarships and bursaries, and applied research.
Niagara College offers more than 100 diploma, bachelor degree and advanced level programs at campuses in Welland, Niagara-on-the-Lake and Niagara Falls. Areas of specialization include food and wine sciences, advanced technology, media, applied health and community safety, supported by unique learning enterprises in food, wine, beer, horticulture and esthetics. For more information, visit

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