New Centre of Forest Innovation at NSCC

Gary Andrea

A new Centre of Forest Innovation operated by Nova Scotia Community College (NSCC) will advance the shift to ecological forestry practices in the province and train the next generation of forestry professionals.

Recently, the Forestry Innovation Transition Trust announced $6.1 million over four years for NSCC to establish the centre at its Truro campus. The centre will have a simulator immersion lab, demonstration woodlot, innovative technology, and programming to meet the needs of the forestry sector.

The project responds to several recommendations of Prof. Bill Lahey’s review of forestry practices, including encouraging innovation and enhancing education and training for the province’s forestry professionals.

“The forestry sector is an important part of Nova Scotia’s economy, and its impact will only be strengthened through workforce development and innovation,” said Premier Iain Rankin. “NSCC has shown exceptional leadership with this new centre. It’s a great example of what the Forestry Innovation Transition Trust was set up to do in responding to Prof. Lahey’s recommendations on ecological forestry.”

NSCC will design and deliver core certificate programs for forest inventory and ecological resource management and offer shorter courses for continuing education and skill development. The centre will bring together industry, innovation, research, and training.

The centre will be complete in June 2022 and will open to students the following school year.

One of the main goals of the project is to grow the sector workforce by providing greater access to training and inclusion of youth, Black, Indigenous, and women learners supported by tuition bursaries.

The Forestry Innovation Transition Trust is a $50 million fund helping to bring innovation to the Nova Scotia forestry sector. With this project, the Trust has so far funded seven projects totalling more than $10.4 million.

 The Trust focuses on accelerating new opportunities within the sector to enhance environmental, social, and economic values and adopt new ecological forestry practices. The fund can be used by companies, organizations, or post-secondary institutions to bring innovation to the forestry and biological resources sector.

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