An unwavering commitment to student success, high-quality programs led by exceptional professors with real-world experience, graduates who’ve gone on to outstanding career success and a treasured relationship with the community – Durham College (DC) has been guided by these ideals since 1967. It was in May 1965 when former Ontario Education Minister Bill Davis introduced legislation to establish colleges of applied arts and technology across the province. The legislation reflected a profound new approach to education that has energized, stimulated and transformed the provincial and national economies ever since. Community leaders in the region quickly responded to this announcement and on October 13, 1966, a volunteer board of governors for DC met for the first time. Administrative offices were soon set up in The Bateman House at 304 Simcoe Street North, a location that was provided by the Oshawa General Hospital. Before long, a permanent campus for the college was found when E.P. Taylor came forward and identified the southwest corner of Conlin and Simcoe streets as a suitable home.DC officially opened for studies on September 18, 1967 in 16 portable classrooms, employing a staff of 14 and serving 205 students. The first academic calendar offered courses in applied arts, business and technology. The college’s first president, Dr. Gordon Willey, affectionately known as Doc, was an engineer by trade and placed special emphasis on technology. The college flourished from the start, soon opening two permanent buildings in 1970 and 1971, expanding programs and celebrating enrolment growth. By its 10th anniversary, courses were also being offered in health sciences and adult training, while enrolment had climbed to more than 1,250 students. Of note, the campus was home to the Regional Municipality of Durham’s first office. Durham Region officially came into being January 1, 1974, comprised of eight municipalities, including Oshawa, Whitby, Ajax and Pickering.On campus, there are many amenities available to students, including housing options, sports and recreational activities, shopping, transportation, parking, health and medical facilities, campus safety, and franchise of food options. Within the college there are multiple learning spaces designated for educational purposes. One space is the 73,000-square-foot (6,800 m2) campus library which has four floors of learning space and a rotunda housing a periodicals collection. The rotunda includes a three-storey glass wall overlooking the Polonsky Commons. Other learning spaces include the computer learning commons, student services building, student centre, and bookable study spaces campus-wide.Durham College offers first year information, academic support resources, career services, and Student Academic Learning Services (SALS). The student life office and Student Association (SA) offer events and programs for students of all years, while the student media comprises The Chronicle student newspaper, Riot Radio, and The Water Buffalo. Athletics range from badminton to basketball, rowing to running, and more.
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In looking back at the year that’s been, while also mapping out our objectives and goals for the current year, we’ve had the opportunity to see the college’s mission – Together we’re leading the way – truly come to life,” said Don Lovisa, president.Read more →
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