Vancouver island University has received $96,000 in one-time funding from the province to help cover the costs of an expanded health care worker program.
The funding is part of a $1.8 million pool of cash the province announced for health programs at eight post-secondary institutions throughout B.C., including VIU.
The funds are aimed at creating more spaces for short-term training programs in the health sector, and is estimated to create 221 more spaces between 2013-2014, At VIU, the funds will be used to allow the university to expand its community mental health worker program.
Dr. Carol Stuart, VIU's dean of health and human services, said the funding, combined with tuition, will allow the university to increase the duration of the program to 26 weeks, up from 13 weeks last year. The university secured a private grant to allow the program to go ahead, There are 25 vacant seats this year, and graduates will receive a certificate.
"We were already planning to offer the program this year through our professional development and training activity, however the. .. funding allows us to do so at the regular tuition rate," said Stuart. Tuition will be $3,345.75, plus fees.
"If we did not receive funding for the program, we would have to look at an enhanced tuition or suspending the program," she added.
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