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News Releases

Ontario Enhancing Research Opportunities for College Students

February 6, 2018

Province Investing in 61 R&D Projects

Ontario is supporting projects across the province that will connect college students with businesses to tackle R&D challenges and launch innovative new products and services.

Reza Moridi, Minister of Research, Innovation and Science was at Sheridan College in Oakville to announce the 61 projects across 22 colleges receiving funding through the Colleges Applied Research and Development Fund (CARDF).  The three projects at Sheridan include:

  1. Virtual Human Characters - An Interdisciplinary Approach -- develops computer-generated characters with human-like qualities that can communicate in real-time using natural human facial expressions, speech and gestures. Virtual humans can be used for training and simulation, and health care education and treatment as virtual patients and caregivers. Students will collaborate with leading external researchers in deep machine learning.
  2. Rapid Engagement Innovation Network (REIN) -- supports regional innovation by engaging small and medium-sized enterprises to solve technology development challenges and adoption across multiple sectors, while preparing students for Ontario's growing tech-based economy.
  3. Simulation and Optimization of Airflow Channels and Equipment Layout in Beverage Coolers -- seeks to optimize the design of a leading refrigeration manufacturer's new modular industrial beverage cooling unit, by increasing the thermodynamic efficiency of the cooling deck cycle and reducing power consumption in the refrigeration system. Students will collaborate with industry partners to attain solutions as vital members of the project team.

Helping students succeed in the innovation economy is part of Ontario's plan to create fairness and opportunity during this period of rapid economic change. The plan includes a higher minimum wage and better working conditions, free tuition for hundreds of thousands of students, easier access to affordable child care, and free prescription drugs for everyone under 25 through the biggest expansion of medicare in a generation.

Quick Facts

  • Sheridan College is receiving over $1.2 million for three projects through CARDF.
  • More than $13 million has been provided to 22 colleges across Ontario for applied R&D funding through CARDF.
  • CARDF was announced in January 2017 — an investment of $20 million over three years administered by the Ontario Centres of Excellence.
  • About 10,000 students each year work with more than 750 companies on research and development activities across Ontario.
  • This program is part of Ontario’s Business Growth Initiative, a five-year commitment of more than $650 million to grow the economy and create jobs by promoting an innovation-based economy, helping small companies scale-up and modernizing regulations for businesses.
  • Ontario’s colleges and universities offer more than 200 co-operative education programs in the information communications and technology fields.

Additional Resources


“Our province needs talent to continue to sustain its growing innovation eco-system. Investing in applied research and development is a step towards a brighter and more prosperous future for our province. By bringing together colleges and the R&D sector, we’re creating opportunities for our students and ensuring they are ready for the jobs of tomorrow.”

Reza Moridi, Minister of Research, Innovation and Science

“Ontario’s college students are bright, ambitious and ready to take on real world challenges. When students have the opportunity to apply their education in practical ways, they’re even better equipped to participate in the skills-based economy we’re building in the province. These projects will encourage students to explore their full potential, immerse themselves in industries and help us keep Ontario’s R&D sector competitive.”

Mitzie Hunter, Minister of Advanced Education and Skills Development

“This fund is one of the many ways the Ontario government and Ontario Centres of Excellence are preparing our communities for the jobs of the future. We are thrilled to be working with R&D partners and the Ontario colleges to administer this fund, and we all look forward to seeing the potential of these young innovators.”

Tom Corr, President and CEO, Ontario Centres of Excellence

“This is a tremendous investment into real-world research at colleges that drives innovation and economic growth. Working in partnership with colleges, small businesses across Ontario will develop new products and services that can be sold throughout the world.”

Linda Franklin, President and CEO, Colleges Ontario

Media Contacts

Lauren Souch
Minister’s Office

Brigitte Marleau
Communications Branch

Source: Ministry of Research, Innovation and Science