Alstom signs memorandum of understanding with Earth District, a consortium of five universities and colleges, to grow the sustainable rail mobility sector in Ontario
Evaluating opportunities including joint research and development of rail specialization in undergraduate engineering programs, banking on Alstom unmatched global expertise in rail mobility.
A new memorandum of understanding (MOU) between Alstom, a global leader in smart and sustainable mobility, and a consortium of colleges and universities, known as the Earth District, will create new learning, research and work opportunities in the mobility sector. The MOU, signed today, will help develop the talent Ontario and Canada need to deliver sustainable mobility solutions critical to tackling the climate crisis, such as the electrification of regional rail systems. Alstom is the leading provider of regional rail systems in Canada and a global leader in producing and maintaining electric trains. The Earth District consortium spans the eastern Greater Toronto Area (GTA) to Peterborough and the Kawarthas as it includes Centennial College, Fleming College, Ontario Tech University, Trent University, and University of Toronto Scarborough.
The parties agree to:
Cooperate on the hiring of interns, co-op students and new graduates from the Earth Collaborators universities and colleges;
Share opportunities to use Alstom’s global network of senior experts in rail-related lectures and assist student-led technical challenge initiatives;
Assess and define the opportunity to develop the first Canadian rail specialization in engineering accessible to undergraduate students from the different Ontario-Tech engineering programs through Alstom University, Alstom's in-house learning and skills development entity, and where applicable, other learning program opportunities across all parties;
Explore additional opportunities that would benefit all parties, including opportunities related to joint research and development.
“Ask any Alstom employee what they love most about their work, and they will tell you it is because we do something that truly matters. At Alstom, we work every day to tackle climate change through sustainable mobility. We want to share not only our passion with the students, but provide them with the opportunity to join us and to drive urgent shift toward sustainability through research, development, and technology,” said Michael Keroullé, president of Alstom Americas.
“The Earth District consortium is excited to embark on this MOU with Alstom to collaboratively engage and develop future talent at both the college and university levels on initiatives that will build sustainable mobility solutions to help address climate change. Collaboration amongst post-secondary institutions that aligns with the goals of industry partners like Alstom, will allow us to create change and develop innovative solutions that are critical to a sustainable future," Les Jacobs, Vice President of Research and Innovation, and project leader on behalf of Ontario Tech University.
“This exciting, new partnership will provide Ontario’s postsecondary students with valuable internships at Alstom to prepare them for jobs in the high-demand rail and sustainable technology sectors,” said Jill Dunlop, Minister of Colleges and Universities. “It is a true win-win as Alstom will have access to some of the brightest, new talent coming out of our postsecondary sector to meet their workforce needs.” The five colleges and universities, that collectively account for more than 80, 000 enrolled college (full-time and part-time), undergraduate and graduate students, deliver a variety of indispensable programs from skilled trades with specializations in transportation to a strategic mix of engineering programs and project management that serve the mobility and energy sectors. Collaboration with the consortium directly connects Alstom to key talent, creates opportunities to advise the post secondaries on the knowledge and skill needs and explore a systems approach to innovate the rail industry by utilizing expertise in adjacent sectors.
The impact of this relationship will make an immediate impact as Alstom continues to deliver several projects and services in the GTA including light-rail vehicles to Metrolinx and the Toronto Transit Commission. Alstom employs over 2,200 people in the GTA, notably in Whitby and Brampton, and is the only manufacturer to have rolling stock production facilities in Ontario. Fostering development and access to talent is key to the growth and success of the province’s transit projects, rail ecosystem and supply chain.
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