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eProv: a Manitoba First!
2010-07-07
Minister Toews and Bruce Duggan cut the ribbon on Providence’s eProv Distance Education
View from behind the webcam in the eProv Seminar Hub - President Gus Konkel can be seen in the top middle box.

Providence is First to Achieve Fully-Interactive Distance Education Demonstrated

Today, Providence College and Seminary launched the first fully-interactive distance classroom experience in Western Canada.

The Honourable Vic Toews, Minister of Public Safety and Member of Parliament for Provencher, was on-hand to cut the ribbon on the official launch of “eProv”.

“I was pleased to take part in the official launch of eProv today, which received $557,000 in funding from the Government of Canada through the Knowledge Infrastructure Program,” said Minister Toews. “Investments made through this Program will not only generate economic benefits and support job creation, but will also enhance research capacity, support the attraction of new students and provide a better educational experience for the highly skilled workers of tomorrow.”

While many post secondary institutions are pursuing a live interactive distance education program, the rural college in Otterburne, MB, is the first to have its technologically-advanced seminar hub ready for fall 2010.

“We’re small, we’re personal, we’re in the country, we’re the little college that can,” said Bruce Duggan, associate professor of Management. “Built on the Nefsis technology platform, eProv makes Providence one of the very few—and perhaps the only—university or college in Canada to be able to offer this.”
“Because it’s small, Providence is an ideal place to develop and implement this sort of cutting-edge technology,” said Duggan. “It can work quickly to build the capacity and skills of educators and educational institutions as they learn how to develop and implement this kind of distance ed. And it can then share the expertise it has developed with larger educational institutions.”
Students joined the eProv demonstration live from the North West Territories, Nunavut, Ontario, Alberta, British Columbia, California, and Northern Ontario.

“From a kid’s perspective, we like technology,” said 15-year-old Spencer who joined via eProv from Victoria, B.C., “and it would be way better to be involved in school in this way.”

At the launch, observer Terry Kennedy was impressed with the audio technology. “The sound quality is amazing. I was really surprised by how clearly you could hear everything. The visual was good, too.”

“The most common concern I hear when talking to perspective students is, ‘I’d like to take a class, but I can’t leave where I am’,” said President Gus Konkel. “Well, now, they don’t have to leave. Students will be able to join classes from anywhere in Manitoba, from across Canada’s North, and even from around the world. So long as they have access to a computer and the internet, they have access to a live classroom experience through Providence.”

Providence College and Seminary is a Christian academic community in the evangelical tradition that teaches people to grow in knowledge and character for leadership and service. Providence is located in Otterburne, MB.

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The eProv story is being featured across Canada. Here is a sample of only some of the coverage we have found mentioning eProv:

eProv on Academica Group Inc.

eProv on CJOB

eProv on Steinbachonline.com

 
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