Humber College and Festo Didactic launch five-year workforce development training program

The partnership is designed to equip students and workers with new skills for the future economy


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Humber College and Festo Didactic, Inc. are entering into a five-year partnership agreement designed to address the skills gap between industry needs and educational programming. Students and employees of advanced manufacturing companies will benefit from this partnership by receiving hands-on training to learn the Industry 4.0 skills necessary to succeed in an evolving economy. Industry 4.0 places a high value on clean technology, renewable energy and robotics and transforming traditional factories into smart ones using the Internet of Things (IoT) and cloud computing.

The agreement, in which Humber will become the exclusive postsecondary partner for the delivery of Festo’s proprietary training courses in the Greater Toronto Area, also includes the installation of the first Cyber Physical Factory in English Canada. The factory, to be housed in the Barrett Centre for Technology Innovation, is a comprehensive and expandable model enabling companies to research and engage in industrial simulations using cutting-edge technology to support production, logistics and quality assurance.

“Festo’s collaboration will strengthen Humber’s track record of providing leading advanced manufacturing and mechatronics education to our students and the community,” said Dr. Chris Whitaker, president, Humber College. “This partnership brings the future of Learning Systems education to Humber, and shows the importance of industry partners working with students on emerging technologies.”

In addition to training, professional development and certification initiatives, the partnership will focus on fostering innovation and education through a science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) outreach program to engage Ontario youth.

“Festo Didactic values Humber’s vision for the future of technology and innovation, and we’re excited to partner with the college to provide the opportunity for students to learn the skills and gain practical experience that today’s employers demand,” said Thomas Lichtenberger, CEO, Festo Didactic. “Bringing us together with other industry partners, we look forward to a collaboration that leads to a world class automation and learning systems centre at Humber.”

The agreement also provides Humber students with internship opportunities in automation and manufacturing at Festo's headquarters in Germany, as well as employment pathways to positions at Festo's Customer Interaction Center in Toronto.

See the complete version of the press release on the website of Humber College (online as of 01/2018).

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