OPDF spotlight: creating multimedia shipbuilding modules for trades training

The selection committee for the Online Program Development Fund awarded funds to nine proposals in the 2011-12 round. BCcampus interviewed the lead proponents of some of the successful projects, and we are spotlighting those projects here in the next few weeks. Here is the first installment: Shipbuilding and Repair Entry level Training Modules, led by Camosun College.

Tradespeople with special shipbuilding skills will be in demand over the next 30 years, and part of BCcampus’s Online Program Development Funds for 2011-12 are going to help train those people at Camosun College, three other post-secondary institutions and even in high schools across the province.

The Shipbuilding training project was granted $134,000 to develop multimedia modules. Two sets of partners are involved in the project: a post-secondary education consortium (Camosun College, British Columbia Institute of Technology, Vancouver Island University and North island College) and industry: the Research Training Organization (RTO) and the Industrial Marine Training and Applied Research Centre (IMTARC) which co-ordinates the development of marine-relevant training material.

Camosun’s Tom Roemer told BCcampus that the traditional curriculum has for the most part been developed, but “this amount that BCcampus is providing will allow us to add interactive components to that curriculum which will in turn allow us to put the program online, and that of course will be much more accessible to a lot of youth and practitioners across the province.”

Camosun has been teaching foundational skills for shipbuilding for decades: welding, pipefitting, electrical. They are the same skills as for those found in a commercial or residential setting, with the added specialization for the particularities of the shipbuilding industry. The OPDF grant will help develop multimedia modules that will allow the demonstrations and skills taught in a classroom setting to be taken to the online learning world.

Funding to develop the Shipbuilding Entry Level program curriculum was provided through the Canada-British Columbia Labour Market Development Agreement.