Foreign student plan recycled, NDP says

Premier Christy Clark stopped at Thompson Rivers University in Kamloops Tuesday to unveil the second part of her jobs plan, a goal of increasing the number of international students in B.C. by 50 per cent. But critics were quick to point out that at least one of the key measures, an international education council, is already in place.

Premier Christy Clark lays out her target for attracting more international students at Thompson Rivers University in Kamloops Tuesday.

Premier Christy Clark stopped at Thompson Rivers University in Kamloops Tuesday to unveil the second part of her jobs plan, a goal of increasing the number of international students in B.C. by 50 per cent.

But critics were quick to point out that at least one of the key measures, an international education council, is already in place.

Clark announced that B.C. will use existing trade offices to help connect international students to B.C. education opportunities, send more students overseas, and “create an international education council to help build strong relationships in both existing and emerging economies, like China, India, Brazil and Saudi Arabia.”

Advanced Education Minister Naomi Yamamoto said the government is working with educational institutions and communities on “a more targeted, co-ordinated and strategic approach  that takes advantage of the growth opportunities.” A detailed international education strategy was promised for release later this year.

In November 2008 the B.C. government announced the formation of the B.C. Council for International Education. The 2008 announcement also described efforts to work with Ottawa to allow more international students to remain as permanent Canadian residents.

Clark said Tuesday that regional workforce tables will be set up to work with local employers, labour, first nations and others to use $15 million in available federal funds for training to address local labour needs around B.C.

Victoria-Beacon Hill MLA Carole James, who has been responding to Clark’s week-long rollout of her jobs initiative, said the new money is welcome but it only restores funds cut from apprenticeship and trades training.

“I would have advised the premier to take a look at her own budget,” James said. “She cut $5 million this year, she planned to cut $5 million next year and year after. So she’s putting back $15 million. She’s holding the line, not increasing amounts of money for skills training.”

International students are already big business for B.C. From Kindergarten to post-secondary and private language schools, B.C. is hosting 17,900 students from Korea, 15,400 from China, 11,100 from Japan, 6,600 from Saudi Arabia and 5,500 from Brazil.

Clark plans to continue her B.C. Jobs Plan announcements with speeches to business audiences in Surrey Wednesday and in Vancouver on Thursday.

Just Posted

Port Hardy Reigns compete in Nanaimo at Island Championships

“We are very fortunate to have this opportunity for our youth in Port Hardy”

Derina Harvey Band – Heartfelt, Energetic, Celtic rock comes to Port Hardy

Front-woman Derina Harvey leads this Celtic-rock act, who offer an authentic east-coast experience.

OPINION: Urgent care room will cost lives

“Seniors, of any demographic, are the most vulnerable to the loss of emergency care.”

James Hayward coroner’s inquest rescheduled hours away from where RCMP shooting occured

The family is “a bit disappointed that it’s going to be held in Campbell River”

Deadline looming for North Island College scholarship applications

Students have until April 24 to apply for a record number of… Continue reading

‘No answers:’ Canadians react to Sri Lanka bombings that killed hundreds

The co-ordinated bomb attacks killed at least 207 people and injured 450 more on Easter Sunday

RCMP confirm witnesses say body found at Kelowna’s Gyro Beach

Police tape is blocking part of the beach and several RCMP officers are on scene.

B.C. fire department rescues kittens

Enderby homeowner not aware kittens in wood pile near garbage pile fire that got out of hand

QUIZ: How much do you know about Easter?

Take this short quiz and put your knowledge to the test

B.C. VIEWS: NDP’s lawyer show is turning into a horror movie

Court actions pile up over pipelines, car insurance, care aides

Global Affairs warns Canadians in Sri Lanka there could be more attacks

A series of bomb blasts killed at least 207 people and injured hundreds more

Waste not: Kootenay brewery leftovers feed the local food chain

Spent grains from the Trail Beer Refinery are donated to local farmers and growers, none go to waste

Deck collapses in Langley during celebration, 35 people injured

Emergency responders rushed to the Langley home

Most Read