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New program to create huge increase in PSW training at Ontario’s colleges

Feb 24, 2021 | Cindy Males, Public Relations and Communications Specialist

Group of psws with a woman in a wheelchair

The new accelerated training program for personal support workers (PSWs) announced today by the provincial government will produce a huge increase in the PSW training at Ontario’s colleges. 

“The demand for healthcare professionals will continue to increase into the future given the provincial demographics,” said Canadore College President and CEO George Burton.  “This is a major step to help fill the demand for personal support workers in our region.  It’s an excellent opportunity for anyone interested in a new career in this field.” 

“Our task as a college is to train more people who are interested in working in healthcare fields.  We also know we must all do more to ensure those in the healthcare field remain in the field with continuous training,” said Burton. 

The Ontario government announced funding today for an accelerated program that will cover students’ tuition and other expenses. The accelerated program starts April 5 and allows participants to graduate with full credentials within six months.

The program will begin accepting applications in early March. The added enrolment is expected to result in over 8,000 PSW graduates by this fall.

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 and participate in laboratory classes available at the colleges and in care settings.

Students in the accelerated program will be available to volunteer at long-term care homes and other settings early in the program, and for paid work placements after three months.

Graduates will enter the workforce at the end of six months. Currently, the standard PSW programs at colleges take eight months to complete.

“Graduates from our Schools of Human Services, Environmental Studies and Health Sciences provide essential care to many of our most vulnerable citizens in Ontario,” Burton said. “We were pleased to collaborate with the province and our partner agencies to create these new opportunities for students.”

Additional program details will be forthcoming within the next two weeks.

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