The BC government has implemented two key recommendations from the first quarterly report of the Premier’s Technology Council (PTC). The announcement that it will spend $150 million over five years to fund 825 new student spaces to double the number of graduates in computer science and electrical and computer engineering was made April 15 upon the release of the PTC’s second report.
Funding for the new spaces will be distributed among the province’s four universities, five university colleges and the BC Institute of Technology.
Also approved and funded is a $5-million Leading Edge Endowment Fund in collaboration with the private sector. The Fund will create 20 research chairs in the areas of medical, social, environmental and technical research. A recommendation from the second PTC report urges the government to add a chair in e-learning.
“If you step back one year, there were three key issues for industry: taxes, increasing research in BC and increasing the number of technology graduates. The government has delivered on all three,” says Paul Lee, senior VP research with Electronic Arts Inc and co-chair of the PTC. “That’s a great start. It’s made a dramatic difference. Companies are now focused on growing in BC.”