Greater SudburyÂ?s four post-secondary institutions, Downtown Sudbury and New Economy Sudbury are supporting a plan to promote the city, and in particular the downtown, as a student-friendly community.
Representatives Cambrian College, CDI College
College BorÃ©al Downtown Sudbury (Sudbury Â?s business association, formerly known as the Sudbury Metro Centre), Laurentian University and New Economy Sudbury signed the Education Cluster Participation Agreement last week.
Â?For the first time in this community, a partnership has been formed between the private sector and post-secondary institutions to market Sudbury as an education destination,Â? states RÃ©al Fortin, chair of New Economy Sudbury.
Â?This economic development project gives our community the opportunity to participate in the knowledge economy which will become a cornerstone of our future growth.Â?
The citizen-driven group is concentrating on promoting the city's other economic strengths: mining, life sciences and retail/tourism.
Post-secondary students are seen as an important part of the city's growth because of the money they spend in the community, as well as the diversity they bring to it.
This fall, the will be a large increase in students coming to the city to study because of the "double cohort." The final OAC students and Grade 12 graduates are entering post-secondary schools at the same time.
This "provides us with a unique opportunity to kick-start the marketing of Sudbury as a premier education destination,Â? says Paul Zulich,of Zulich Enterprises and vice-chair of New Economy Sudbury.
Â?The first priority will be to provide quality housing to keep students here which will enable us to create a memorable student experience.Â?
Post-secondary students looking for housing in Sudbury for the fall have a one-stop shopping site.
A new website, www.studentvillage.ca was also launched last week by the citizens' group
The site offers information about Sudbury's four post-secondary institutions, maps, and information about the city in general.
Eventually, the site will have housing listings. In the meantime, students can post an e-mail to ask about places to live.
Businesses on Elgin Street are being encouraged to develop their underused spaces as student apartments.
The Ledo Hotel on Elgin Street has renovated two rooms for students and plans to have all 25 rooms ready for September.