Cumberland and Parkland Colleges to officially merge later this year

Submitted Photo The Cumberland College Melfort Campus.

Cumberland College, with campuses located in Melfort, Nipawin and Tisdale announced on Friday that they will be merging with Parkland College effective July 1, 2023.

Approval of the merger was received from the provincial government this week.

The colleges have been operating as a coalition since 2019 through a shared CEO and Board of Governors, the partnership was initially announced in 2018.

Interim President and CEO, Alison Dubreuil explained in a press release that the merger will better position both colleges to serve their learners and communities through shared resources, increased partnership opportunities and the development of new programming.

Cumberland has trained adults in northeastern Saskatchewan since 1975. They offer programs in several trades, as well as certificates and diplomas in fields such as early childhood education, continuing care, and agriculture science.

The recommendation for the coalition between the two colleges in 2019 was made by the Task Force on Regional College Efficiency which includes Board Chairs and College CEOs from across the province.

The college also provides adult education, university courses and continuing education in a host of disciplines. Parkland College serves the region around Yorkton.

The two colleges have been working as a coalition since 2019 and share the same chief executive officer and board of governors.

The new college will be based on shared values and an equal partnership that will support the local labour market and demands of a growing Saskatchewan economy.

Ray Sass, Cumberland and Parkland College Board of Governors Co-Chair explained that “by merging Cumberland College and Parkland College, we will be stronger together. This will position our merged college to be more robust and provide the opportunity to offer more programming to recruit and retain more students.”

Corinna Stevenson, Cumberland and Parkland College Board of Governors Co-Chair stated that “the post-secondary landscape in Saskatchewan and Canada is increasingly competitive and we know significant change and innovation is required to ensure we continue to meet the changing needs of our students, communities, and partners.

”Saskatchewan’s Government fully supports the merger of Cumberland and Parkland Colleges,” Minister of Advanced Education Gord Wyant said.

“By combining resources,the colleges will be better able to expand programming offered to students and increase opportunities for staff.”

The colleges will spend the next five months preparing for an official merger to take place later this year. The merger will follow a phased approach while ensuring student success and staff support continue to be a priority.

While the new merged college will still have the same student-centred approach to support diverse learners throughout our region, the college will go through a rebranding process resulting in a new name and logo.

“Our rebranding will reflect our shared values which includes us being an innovative, inclusive, relevant and responsive centre for adult education,” Dubreuil explained

Parkland College currently has locations in Yorkton, Melville, Fort Qu’Appelle, Esterhazy, Canora and Kamsack.