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

B.C. to move salmon farms out of coastal migration route

Broughton Archipelago plan set to start in spring of 2019

Stranded B.C. trucker writes final wishes before being rescued 3 days later

‘I was just praying someone would come along’

Campbell River School District calls for report on buses and seat-belts

Parents have questions following expose on research around buses and safety

New wind warning for most of Vancouver Island

Forecasters are calling for strong winds up to 90km/h for some areas

Trudeau to make it harder for future PM to reverse Senate reforms

Of the 105 current senators, 54 are now independents who have banded together in Independent Senators’ Group

Canada’s ambassador meets with second detainee in China

Global Affairs says John McCallum, Canada’s ambassador to China, met with Spavor Sunday

B.C. VIEWS: Andrew Wilkinson on taxes, ICBC and union changes

Opposition leader sees unpredictable year ahead in 2019

5 tips for self-care, mental wellness this holiday season

Ministry of Mental Health and Addictions urging British Columbians to prioritize self care through festive season

Rescued B.C. cat with misshapen legs in need of forever home – with carpet

Mirielle was born with misshapen back legs and after a tough life on the streets, is looking for a forever home.

VIDEO: Craft growers will add to recreational market, cannabis producer says

Two B.C. men say their expertise in running small legal medical grow-ops a benefit to recreational market

World Sikh Organization demands Canada prove Sikh extremism is a threat

Sikh community says this is first time such extremism has been mentioned in federal terror-threat assessment

Risk of catching the flu increasing in B.C. this holiday season: BCCDC

Dr. Danuta Skowronski with the BC Centre for Disease Control says influenza will pick up during the holidays

Boeser has 2 points as Canucks ground Flyers 5-1

WATCH: Vancouver has little trouble with slumping Philly side

Most Read