News Archives: GPRC Fairview Hosts Open House
Thursday, November 16th, 2017
GRANDE PRAIRIE – On November 16, Grande Prairie Regional College (GPRC) Fairview invited the community to celebrate its latest investment in student success with an Open House and Ribbon Cutting event for the Harvey McLachlan Arena, familiarly known as the Large Animal Lab.
Extensive upgrades and renovations to the lab valued at $425,000 were completed in the past year with funding from the Alberta Government and the College, with a portion of the funding made possible by generous donations from the community. Updates include new and improved animal handling systems, stainless steel cabinetry, floor drainage system with fibreglass grates, dark room and pressure washer system. The Open House event offered tours of the new facility followed by a reception.
Animal Health Technology (AHT) students use the Harvey McLachlan Arena when learning how to safely handle and care for large animals like cows, sheep and horses. Dean of Trades, Agriculture & Environment, Christopher Laue said that the updated lab is now more fully aligned with industry standards and offers state-of-the-art training equipment.
“This was a significant project to incorporate into our Animal Health Technology program,” he said, “With the help of our stakeholders, GPRC was able to successfully complete a valuable new addition to the program that will be indispensable to our students for years to come.”
Cheyenne Dreger, a recent GPRC graduate of the AHT program who used the lab both before and after the renovations, said the upgrades enhanced the quality of her learning experience.
“Overall, the lab was a lot easier to use [after the renovations],” said Dreger. “There are lots of new squeezes for the cattle, for example, which is good for the students because that’s what is normally used in clinics.”
According to Dreger, who graduated with her diploma last spring and now works as a technician in a mixed animal practice, the updated facility better reflects the type of environments students will see when they enter the workforce.
“We are always proud to invest in improving the student experience,” said Susan Bansgrove, Vice-President Academics and Research. “This upgrade will support faculty in providing the highest standard of Animal Health education. The more up-to-date and sophisticated our facilities become, the better the experience we can offer our students.”
Dreger said that the reason she chose GPRC Fairview to pursue her education was because of its reputation for excellence with large animal handling. “It’s good that they are upgrading these facilities,” said Dreger, “because GPRC really does offer the best large animal experience.”
GPRC is a comprehensive community institution, publicly supported to provide opportunities in post-secondary education in northwestern Alberta. Established in 1966 in Grande Prairie, GPRC now includes campuses in Fairview and Grande Prairie, and learning centres in Edson, Grande Cache, Hinton and Jasper. GPRC offers a wide variety of career certificates and diplomas, pre-employment and apprenticeship trades, university transfer studies, and several opportunities for on-campus degree completion at baccalaureate and master levels through collaborations with four-year universities. For more information, visit gprc.ab.ca.
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