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After a year of uncertainty, Vancouver Community College’s renowned ESL programs can accept students again. With the provincial government’s new policy announcement last year, VCC is able to continue its role as the leading provider of high-quality ESL language training.
In December, the B.C. government released a new measure allowing post-secondary institutions to charge tuition on English language training programs. At the same time, the provincial government also provided a grant that would subsidize the tuition fee for low-income students. Since the majority of the high-level ESL program students are not high-income earners, they may be able to study for low or no tuition fee.
“ESL at VCC is open for registration. With the implementation of the new provincial government policy and the high capacity and experience of the college’s ESL teachers, the enrolment of the ESL programs is back on track,“ said Dr. Peter Nunoda, President of VCC. “Thank you for the support of all the Chinese community leaders and the continuous care of the Chinese media on the affairs of the college.”
Karen Shortt, the VCC faculty association president who led the “ESL Matters” campaign, said that the campaign goal was to call for the provincial government to take responsibility for funding English language programs. Shortt hopes that many of the immigrants who need the high-quality ESL language programs VCC offers to advance their career will be able to study tuition free or at affordable rate. Shortt asked the Chinese media to help disseminate the message, so that immigrants who need to upgrade their language capacity are aware that they can now continue to study at VCC.
“Like the name, I think this program helps immigrants settle in society. I need to improve my English; there is a big gap between myself and English speaking society. This program will help me to close the gap.” says Shih-Ting (Erica) Huang, VCC ESL pathways student.
VCC’s next term will commence in early April. Several information sessions for ESL programs have begun, info sessions start today.