The Ontario government has announced support for York University’s new Markham Centre Campus, the first publicly assisted university in York Region.
This new campus expansion is the first project proceeding under the government’s updated Major Capacity Expansion Policy Framework. The Policy Framework encourages the responsible development of new postsecondary campuses, ensuring minimal cost to the taxpayer, a high-quality education that aligns with labour market needs, and expansion plans that align with community planning and industry partnerships.
Details were provided today by Premier Doug Ford; Ross Romano, Minister of Colleges and Universities; Rhonda L. Lenton, President and Vice-Chancellor of York University; Wayne Emmerson, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer for the Regional Municipality of York; Frank Scarpitti, Mayor of Markham; and Billy Pang, MPP for Markham—Unionville. MPPs Logan Kanapathi, Paul Calandra and Stephen Lecce were also in attendance.
“The time has come for a new, innovative approach to financing college and university expansions. Instead of the province writing multi-million-dollar cheques, we have developed a system that encourages the development of new campuses with a much smaller cost to the taxpayer,” Premier Doug Ford said. “The new Markham Centre Campus is a model of responsible expansion which will offer local students access to a world-class education and prepare them for the jobs of the future.”
The construction of the Markham campus will begin this month and will aid in York Region’s post-COVID-19 economic recovery, as it is expected to generate over $350 million in immediate economic benefits and to create over 2,000 jobs.
“Our province’s postsecondary institutions play a fundamental role in Ontario’s economy and will be key players in Ontario’s economic recovery,” said Ross Romano, Minister of Colleges and Universities. “By supporting self-funded campus expansions like the one by York University, we are encouraging independence and accountability, expanding choice and opportunities for our students, and protecting taxpayers.”
York University’s new Markham Centre Campus is expected to open in Fall 2023 and will provide students in York Region greater access to university programs in the high-demand fields of technology, commerce, data science and entrepreneurship at the undergraduate and graduate levels.
“This is a game-changing announcement for Markham and York Region,” said Kanapathi. “I have believed in this project for a very long time and it is extremely exciting to see all of our hard work finally come to fruition.”
The economic impact of COVID-19 has increased the need for postsecondary institutions to modernize and focus on job-market relevance by preparing students to succeed in the global job market. The new Markham Centre Campus addresses the need for skilled graduates, by combining academic programs with on-the-job learning opportunities, to prepare students for the workforce when they graduate.