On-campus vaccination clinic for students, staff and public to be held on September 13 and 20

Niagara College students, staff, and members of the public will be able to receive a first or second dose of a COVID-19 vaccine on campus this September.

GO-VAXX bus, a mobile vaccination clinic, will be on campus for drop-ins on the following dates:

September 13 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. @ the Welland Campus in parking lot A (east side).
September 20 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. @ the Daniel J. Patterson Campus in Niagara-on-the-Lake in parking lot A (south side).

Maps of campus lots can be found on the NC website. Parking is free for those visiting the Go-VAXX bus.

The GO-VAXX bus operates as a fully functioning vaccine clinic with the necessary supplies and trained staff to provide assistance to people and ensure vaccines are administered safely. All COVID-19 safety precautions will be followed on board, including the required pre-vaccination screening and post-vaccination monitoring. A tent will be set up where you will be asked to wait for 15 minutes after your vaccine. The GO-VAXX bus is administering the Pfizer vaccine.

Bring your health card. If you do not have a health card or if it’s expired, bring another form of government-issued photo identification such as a driver’s license, passport, status card, or birth certificate. Please do not visit the GO-VAXX bus if you are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19.

To learn more about the GO-VAXX bus, visit ontario.ca/page/go-vaxx-bus-schedule.


Important update and reminder for all Students and Employees: Mandatory Vaccine Policy

As we prepare for the start of term we are providing important reminders for students and employees who will be studying or working on campus this Fall.

Niagara College has implemented a mandatory COVID-19 vaccination policy in response to the recent rise in COVID-19 cases, in consultation with public health authorities and at the direction of the province of Ontario. You can view Niagara College’s COVID-19 vaccination policy here. The policy applies to all students, employees contractors and official visitors who are attending a Niagara College campus as of September 7, 2021.

Important Reminder: Check the status of your vaccine documents

If you are working or studying on campus starting next week, you have been advised of the requirement to submit documentation via the student or employee portal. Once you’ve done so, an important reminder to confirm that your vaccine documentation has been approved. This can be done via the student or employee portal by clicking the “Vaccine Policy Documentation” link. The status column will be marked as ‘approved,’ ‘pending,’ ‘rejected’ or ‘flagged for review.’ If the status is ‘rejected,’ it will indicate the reason for rejection, which must be addressed before you can access campus. Common issues that lead to documentation being rejected include:

  • Legibility (documents are unreadable);
  • Validity (ie: not government-issued, or not in English or French);
  • Names on the documents don’t match names on College records.

New: Mandatory Testing

On August 31, the province of Ontario notified all colleges and universities in the province that, in addition to having mandatory vaccine policies in place, colleges and universities must require individuals who are only partially vaccinated or who have an approved exemption to “submit to regular antigen point of care testing for COVID 19 and demonstrate a negative result at … a minimum of every seven days,” and “provide verification of the negative test result in a manner determined by the (College).”

If you are a student or employee to whom this new provincial requirement will apply, you will be contacted directly, and you will be provided with further information on the College’s processes for testing and submitting an attestation of negative test results in the coming days, including how and where you can access testing. Once this process is underway, those who have provided vaccine documentation and are not fully vaccinated, AND those who have been approved for an exemption must provide Niagara College with an attestation of a negative test result at least every seven days, and in some cases every day that you attend campus, until you have provided proof of full vaccination (two doses, and 14 days have elapsed), or until further notice if you have been exempted from the mandatory vaccination policy on medical or religious/creed grounds. In the meantime, current access procedures and requirements will remain in place.

Niagara College’s mandatory vaccine policy will be updated to reflect this new provincial requirement as of September 7.

Update: Exemptions

Niagara College’s COVID-19 Vaccination Policy also outlines how employees and students who are not vaccinated due to medical or other grounds recognized by the Ontario Human Rights Code can request an exemption. Application forms can be found here.

Those who have applied for an exemption under the grounds outlined above will be contacted directly when their application has been reviewed and approved or denied. If your application has been denied or you have not received confirmation that your application for an exemption has been approved, you will not be approved for access to campus until your application has been approved.

If your exemption has been approved, you will receive further information regarding additional requirements for campus access, including the provincial testing requirement outlined above.

Access to campus

If you have not uploaded proof of vaccination or if your proof of vaccination has not been approved or if you have applied for an exemption but it has been denied or has not yet been approved, please do not come to campus as you will not be permitted access.

FAQs regarding Niagara College’s mandatory vaccination policy can be found here.

Mark your calendars for NC’s highly interactive Virtual Spring Convocation Ceremonies

As the Spring season approaches, planning is underway for our convocation ceremonies this June, and we look forward to celebrating the hard-earned accomplishments of NC’s Class of 2021.

With the health and safety of our college community the top priority during COVID-19, and with physical distancing and limited gathering measures remaining in place, NC’s Spring Convocation Ceremonies will once again take a virtual format.

During the week of June 21 to 25, highly interactive and engaging ceremonies will be live streamed from NC’s Welland Campus. President Sean Kennedy and vice president, Academic, Fiona Allan will take to the convocation stage each day to deliver the ceremonies and celebrate with students, virtually.

“Although the current circumstances prevent us from celebrating in person, we are working ‘NC together’ to create a memorable celebration of our students and their remarkable accomplishments as they embark on the next chapter of their lives,” said president Kennedy.

Building on the success of NC’s Virtual Convocation Ceremonies in 2020, which drew tens of thousands of views from across Niagara, Canada and around the world, this year’s celebrations will feature the innovative elements from the previous events and incorporate new enhancements.

Through NC’s Virtual Convocation, graduates are invited to be active participants in their ceremony. As they participate from the comfort of home, graduates can connect with their fellow classmates and faculty through program Zoom parties and become convocation content creators through a custom social media experience. Using the hashtag #NCGrad2021, graduates can share photos and videos of their at-home convocation celebrations, which will be integrated into the live ceremonies in real-time. Select clips from the Zoom parties will also be incorporated into the livestream, enabling graduates to make an on-screen appearance.

Further details regarding virtual convocation, including ceremony times, schedules and a special guest speaker, will be available in the coming weeks.

Students should also be advised that May 31, 2021 is the deadline to meet graduation requirements to be included in our Spring Virtual Convocation Ceremonies. Please review your MyNC account to ensure your final grades are submitted before this date.

Visit niagaracollege.ca/virtualconvocation/ for updates.

a graduating student is pictured during his at-home convocation celebration a 2020 grad is pictured at home with a graduation cap and gown

New partnership creates a world of opportunities for students

Niagara College and Global University Systems (GUS) announced a partnership today that provides a broad range of opportunities for students from both organizations, sets the stage for collaborative international projects and partnerships, and the delivery of select Niagara College credentials at GUS’s Toronto School of Management (TSoM).

Based in the Netherlands and with a strong presence in Canada, Global University Systems (GUS) is a network of higher education institutions offering undergraduate, graduate and law degree programs, educating more than 85,000 students worldwide. The new agreement has received approval from the Ministry of Colleges and Universities, under provincial policy that creates flexibility for public colleges to partner with private colleges to expand the delivery of programs.

Through the partnership, four Niagara College business and hospitality programs will be delivered at GUS’s Toronto School of Management in downtown Toronto, providing international students with the opportunity to enrol in NC’s programs while accessing the significant employment, recreational and entertainment opportunities offered in Toronto.

The initial programs within the partnership, with the first intake already open for Spring 2021 are:

  • Business General
  • International Business Management (Graduate Certificate)
  • Hospitality and Tourism Management (Graduate Certificate)
  • Human Resources Management (Graduate Certificate)

TSoM has been selected as the exclusive partner to deliver these credentials in Toronto. The agreement ensures that the student experience and academic delivery of programming will be aligned with NC’s exceptional student experience. A comprehensive quality assurance framework will ensure that students at the Toronto location enjoy the same level of academic rigor, and quality of student services that are offered at NC’s Niagara-based campuses. Programs will be delivered by expert TSoM faculty, and graduates will receive a Niagara College credential.

“We’re fortunate to have a partner with an exceptional track record in higher education and global engagement, who demonstrates the ability and the commitment to meet the high standards that we set for our programs and our services,” said Niagara College president Sean Kennedy.

“We are honoured to have been chosen by a prestigious institution such as Niagara College Canada to work together,” said Ehsan Safdari, Managing Director at TSoM. “We are equally committed to support students with professional education that will help them in their careers. We believe this will be a great opportunity to provide students with expanded access to Niagara College’s top-quality programs. We look forward to working with them and welcoming their students at our campus.”

The agreement also paves the way for Niagara College students to pursue study abroad, co-op placements, exchanges and international field studies within the GUS network; pathways from Niagara College diploma programs to GUS degree programs, cooperative global business and educational development programs; and Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) and English as a Subsequent Language (ESL) project possibilities globally.

“This exciting partnership is an important part of our broader strategy to create new global opportunities for students, and support long-term enrolment stability and growth,” said Niagara College president Sean Kennedy. “The agreement is also driven by our entrepreneurial spirit, as we work to identify global partnership opportunities that support our core operations in Niagara.”

“We are excited to see TSoM engage in this innovative and entrepreneurial partnership,” said Cyndi McLeod, GUS Canada CEO. “This collaboration aims to provide all students with high-quality education that prepares them for Ontario’s workforce while meeting the demand from international students for Niagara College postsecondary programs.”

For more information, visit www.niagaracollegetoronto.ca.


Media inquiries, please contact:

Michael Wales
Manager, Corporate Communications
Niagara College
Cell: 905 328-4101
[email protected]

Ehsan Safdari
Managing Director, TSoM
Toronto School of Management
Cell: 647-648-6507
[email protected]

About the Toronto School of Management

Toronto School of Management (TSoM) is an innovative college offering a broad range of career-focused programs in business, hospitality and tourism, digital marketing, cybersecurity, data analytics and accounting. Located among some of North America’s leading firms and organizations, the school offers an ideal environment for students who are eager to immerse themselves in a vibrant business community and diverse cultural activities.

Toronto School of Management is a registered private career college accredited by the Ministry of Colleges and Universities.

The campus is situated in the heart of Ontario’s capital – Canada’s business and culture hub. The central location welcomes students from around the world to guide them along the path to become successful accountants and business professionals.

TSoM partners with many companies from a range of industries to make sure that students get the most benefit from their course. These partnerships mean that students can join a real workplace and gain valuable experience.

TSoM works with industry leaders to design and deliver innovative, career-centric programs. We work tirelessly to provide students with the right combination of academic excellence and practical hands-on experience, educating ambitious people to take their careers further.

About Niagara College

Situated in the heart of the Niagara region, Niagara College delivers more than 130 certificate, diploma, advanced diploma and bachelor’s degree programs from specialized campuses in Niagara-on-the-Lake and Welland.

Currently, more than 9,000 full-time students study at Niagara College, including students from more than 120 countries. Niagara College is also involved in projects and partnerships around the world.

A leader in applied education, Niagara College’s areas of specialization include business, hospitality and tourism, advanced technology, agri-business and food and wine sciences. Programs are supported by unique learning enterprises, including Canada’s first commercial teaching winery, brewery and distillery; a greenhouse, spa and restaurant. In 2018, Niagara College launched Canada’s first postsecondary credential in commercial cannabis production.

Niagara College is also a leader in applied research and in 2019 was named Canada’s number-one research college by Research InfoSource. Through its applied research activities, students, and faculty and staff experts work with industry partners, helping companies innovate, and create new products and processes.

Learn more at www.niagaracollege.ca.

Artisan Distilling program’s first rum wins bronze at U.S. competition

Spirits are high at the Niagara College Teaching Distillery after a student-produced rum won bronze at the U.S. Open Whiskey and Spirits Championships.

The accolades for School Spirits Small Batch Rum, produced by the first students to graduate from the Artisan Distilling program, came in the Dark/Barrel Aged Rum category of the competition, which included entries from throughout Canada and the U.S. Niagara College was the only teaching distillery to be among the winners in any category.

“It feels good to win an award like this,” said David Dickson, College distiller. “It instills a sense of pride that, in such a short time, our students have been able to develop to such a level to create a high quality spirit. To be able to achieve this in such a short time feels like a real feather in our cap.”

The award-winning rum was a year in the making by students, who saw their handiwork compete against rums aged longer or blended with spirits from elsewhere. Production of the School Spirits Small Batch Rum started six months into the year-long program when students began fermenting dark brown sugar. All signs pointed to something special in the works after their first distillation using small copper pot stills to capture only the best fraction of the spirit. 

The rum was fermented in a two-week process, which is slower than typical production, and led to a more complete attenuation of sugar by the yeast. Students took charge of the entire process, Dickson noted, signing their name to the 57-litre bourbon cask in which the spirit was left to age for 12 months, the minimum a Canadian rum must mature in a barrel.

“Then they went off in their careers. It was sort of like a time capsule,” Dickson said. “Their finesse was what caused the spirit to age like it did.”

The result was a rum with a surprising golden colour, and a clean and balanced aromatic profile with notes of vanilla and candied fruit. It’s dry and light in body compared to rums with added sweeteners. The finish has a pleasing texture with vanilla, caramel and a touch of bourbon spice.

“Our first student-crafted rum clearly demonstrates our students’ talents and skills when it comes to distillation and fermentation,” said Steve Gill, general manager of Niagara College’s Learning Enterprises. “The fact that they so confidently took on the production of rum and then earned such honours alongside spirits produced by more established distilleries elsewhere in North America also speaks to the quality of teaching happening in our Artisan Distilling program. It shows that the future of craft distilling in Canada is in capable hands.”

Two hundred 375-millilitre bottles of School Spirits Small Batch Rum were released for sale earlier this summer at the Wine Visitor + Education Centre (Niagara College Daniel J. Patterson Campus, 135 Taylor Rd., Niagara-on-the-Lake). The rum sells for $26 with proceeds from sales supporting student learning.

Visit usopenwhiskey.com to learn more about the awards. 

Niagara College’s Teaching Distillery is a 2,500-square-foot facility equipped with five stills, four mash tuns and 10 fermenters. Home to the College’s Artisan Distilling program, students produce a variety of distilled products including vodka, gin, brandy, rum, whisky and other spirits. It opened in September 2018, completing the trifecta of beverage fermentation sciences at NC’s learning enterprises, following the footsteps of its Teaching Winery and Teaching Brewery which were also the first of their kind in Canada.

Niagara College offers more than 150 diploma, bachelor degree and advanced level programs; as well as more than 600 credit, vocational and general interest Part-Time Studies courses. Areas of specialization include food and wine sciences, advanced technology, media, applied health and community safety, supported by unique learning enterprises in food, wine, beer, distilling, horticulture and esthetics. For more information visit niagaracollege.ca.


Julie Greco
Communications Consultant, Niagara College
Cell: 905 328 2532
[email protected]

Michael Wales
Manager, Corporate Communications
Cell: 905-328-4101
[email protected]

Former NC president Dan Patterson named President Emeritus; contributions to post-secondary sector recognized with national award

Niagara College’s fifth president, Dan Patterson, PhD, has been honoured with two special accolades in recognition of his remarkable contributions to Niagara College and Canada’s post-secondary landscape during his distinguished career.

Patterson, who concluded his 25-year tenure as NC president this past February, has been named President Emeritus of Niagara College, a designation bestowed on him by the College’s Board of Governors effective July 1, 2020. The honorary title recognizes Patterson’s outstanding service to the College and local communities.

“I, along with the entire Board of Governors, am thrilled to acknowledge Dan’s remarkable contributions to Niagara College, and our local communities, through the President Emeritus designation,” said John Scott, Chair of Niagara College’s Board of Governors. “Dan’s leadership and vision were vital to the dynamic evolution of the College over the past 25 years, and I am proud to confer his Emeritus status as part of his legacy in Niagara.”

Earlier this week, Patterson was also recognized by Colleges and Institutes Canada (CICan) as the 2020 recipient of its Distinguished Service Award, an honour given to him by his peers on CICan’s Presidents’ Leadership Network.

“As one of our longest sitting presidents, Dan Patterson has left an indelible mark on Niagara College, but also on the entire network of Canadian colleges and institutes,” said CICan President and CEO, Denise Amyot. “Under his leadership, Niagara College has grown into a vibrant institution that has both strong local and national impacts. He has had an extraordinary career, but he stood out for his contagious enthusiasm and his generosity when it came to supporting his peers and sharing his knowledge and expertise with others.”

Sean Kennedy, who succeeded Patterson as president of Niagara College this year, said the CICan Distinguished Service Award shows that Patterson also left a mark on postsecondary education in Canada.

“While we at Niagara College appreciate Dan’s remarkable legacy, this national honour really demonstrates that Dan’s lasting contributions to the college sector reach far beyond the borders of Niagara and Ontario,” said Kennedy. “I was fortunate to have Dan as a colleague and mentor for many years, and it gives me great pleasure to see him receive such well-deserved recognition.”

CICan is the voice of Canada’s publicly-supported colleges, institutes, cegeps and polytechnics, and an international leader in education for employment with ongoing programs in over 25 countries. Learn more at www.collegesinstitutes.ca.

Niagara College offers more than 150 diploma, bachelor degree and advanced level programs; as well as more than 600 credit, vocational and general interest Part-Time Studies courses. Areas of specialization include food and wine sciences, advanced technology, media, applied health and community safety, supported by unique learning enterprises in food, wine, beer, spirits, horticulture and esthetics. For more information visit niagaracollege.ca.


Photo caption: Former Niagara College president Dan Patterson is pictured at one of the many convocation ceremonies he celebrated over his 25-year career with the College.

Media inquiries, please contact:

Michael Wales
Manager, Corporate Communications
Cell: 905-328-4101
[email protected]


Niagara College kicks off Pride Month with rainbow flag raising

Rainbow flags will fly over Niagara College campuses this June, to celebrate equality, inclusivity, and acceptance in support of the College’s LGBTQ2+ community during Pride Month.

With physical distancing measures in place, Niagara College president Sean Kennedy and Niagara College Student Administrative Council president Tom Price led a flag-raising ceremony at the Welland Campus on the morning of June 1. A flag was also raised at the Daniel J. Patterson Campus in Niagara-on-the-Lake.

“The Niagara College Student Administrative Council believes it is imperative to foster an unrestricted awareness of inclusivity and equity, and it is our resolute desire to provide a welcoming and safe space for all individuals and communities at Niagara College,” said Price. “The Rainbow Flag raising is a collaborative partnership with Niagara College that is symbolic of our unwavering support for not only the LGBTQ2+ community, and other marginalized communities, but for all students, faculty, support staff, administrators, and visitors at the College. Now, more than ever, it is imperative that we work together as a community to strengthen and support each other.”

In addition to raising the rainbow flag for the month of June, in 2019, rainbow crosswalks were painted at both campuses as permanent markers of support for not only the LGBTQ2+ community on campus, but all communities and students at Niagara College.

“The rainbow flag raising event is a new tradition for Niagara College, and one that we felt was important to continue this year, even while we are physically apart, as it signifies our commitment to providing a safe, respectful, and inclusive learning environment and workplace,” said Niagara College president Sean Kennedy. “An important part of Niagara College’s DNA is our welcoming nature and we are proud to work with our Student Administrative Council to celebrate our LGBTQ2+ community.”

Niagara College student Dalton Bird joined Kennedy and Price for the flag-raising ceremony. Bird, a second-year student in the Business Administration Human Resources three-year advanced diploma program, is an advocate for the College’s LGBTQ2+ community as the current vice president of NCSAC’s Loving Out Loud (LOL) Club. Under Bird’s leadership, the Club was recently nominated for a 2020 Pride Niagara Unity Award.

“The raising of the rainbow flag at Niagara College is a symbol of inclusiveness,” said Bird. “Niagara College is a very inclusive environment that allows students to express themselves.”

In addition to the flag raising, NCSAC will celebrate Pride Month with several virtual initiatives throughout the month of June:

  • NCSAC Ask Me Anything (AMA) live Instagram feature with NCSAC LOL Club president Felipe Reis and vice-president Dalton Bird on June 4 at 1 p.m. The AMA will highlight the club and their Pride Niagara Unity Award nomination, while promoting the Pride Niagara Awards taking place June 5.
  • In partnership with NC’s Centre for Student Engagement and Leadership (CSEL), members of the NCSAC and LGBTQ2+ community will appear on CSEL’s Go To College They Said podcast. CSEL and NCSAC will co-host a podcast episode with guests Enzo DeDevitiis from Pride Niagara and Vanity a la mode the week of June 1, while Felipe Reis, NCSAC’s LOL Club president, will join the podcast the week of June 8. The podcast is available on iTunes, Spotify and the Podcast App and weekly episodes are typically released on Thursdays.

Niagara College offers more than 130 diploma, bachelor degree and advanced level programs; as well as more than 600 credit, vocational and general interest Part-Time Studies courses. Areas of specialization include food and wine sciences, advanced technology, media, applied health and community safety, supported by unique learning enterprises in food, wine, beer, spirits, horticulture and esthetics. For more information visit niagaracollege.ca.


Pictured above (L-R):
Niagara College Student Administrative Council president Tom Price, Niagara College president Sean Kennedy, and Dalton Bird, NC student and vice president of the NC Student Administrative Council’s Loving Out Loud Club, celebrate the raising of a rainbow flag at the Welland Campus in recognition of Pride Month on June 1.

Media inquiries, please contact:

Michael Wales
Manager, Corporate Communications
Cell: 905-328-4101
[email protected]


Andy Hall
Marketing Communications Manager, NCSAC
Cell: 905-537-0438
[email protected]

College hours and operations during mid-term break

Please note the following hours for College operations during the mid-term break, February 24 to 28:

Reduced transit schedules will be in effect for mid-term break. Visit yourncsac.ca/transitschedules

NCSAC Offices will be open regular hours.

Rise and Shine breakfast program will not be operating during the mid-term break.

The Undergrounds at the NOTL Campus and The Shack at the Welland Campus will be open from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.

The Core at the Welland Campus and The Armoury at the NOTL Campus will be open from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Cafeteria hours will be adjusted during the mid-term break:

  • Welland Campus dining hall will be open 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
  • Tim Hortons Welland Campus (Secord) will be open 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. (breakfast program open)
  • Pizza Pizza will be open 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.
  • Nourish/On the Go will be open 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.
  • Chef Inspired will be open 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.
  • Market Grill will be open 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.
  • Subway Welland Campus will be open 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.
  • Tim Hortons AHI will be closed.
  • Tech Building Café will be closed.
  • NOTL Campus dining hall will be closed.
  • Tim Hortons NOTL Campus will be open 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. (breakfast program all day)
  • Subway NOTL Campus will be open 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.

NC Libraries will be open regular hours on the weekends before, after and during the mid-term break.

Bookstores will be open Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. They are closed for inventory at both campuses on February 25.

In Student Services, Health Wellness and Accessibility Services will be open 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Test centres will be open Monday to Friday 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

The Centre for Student Engagement, Career Services and Academic Advising offices will be open regular hours during the mid-term break, 8:30 a.m. to 4: 30 p.m.

Enrolment Services will be open regular hours at both campuses, Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., and Tuesday’s from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

NC International (Welland and NOTL campuses) will be open regular hours, Monday to Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

NC Athletics (Welland and NOTL campuses) will be open regular hours Monday to Friday 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. It will be closed Saturday and Sunday (weekends before and after). Fitness classes are cancelled during mid-term break. The regular fitness class schedule will resume on March 2.

NC Winery and Brewery retail stores (NOTL Campus) will be open regular hours, Sunday to Friday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Bench To Go (NOTL Campus) will be open from 8 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

The NC Greenhouse will be open Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Niagara College Community Employment Services, located at 43 Church Street in St. Catharines will maintain regular hours.

Success uncorked: NC’s Gastronomy Chardonnay earns 2019 Lieutenant Governor’s Award for Excellence in Ontario Wines

The awards keep pouring in.

The Niagara College Teaching Winery shone at the 2019 Lieutenant Governor’s Awards for Excellence in Ontario Wines, with NC’s 2017 Gastronomy Chardonnay making the shortlist of just 11 winning wines.

This is the second award for the student-crafted, barrel-fermented chardonnay from the College’s on-campus estate vineyard (St. David’s Bench), which won gold at the 25th annual Ontario Wine Awards this June for the Oaked Chardonnay Award Under $20 category.

The Hon. Elizabeth Dowdeswell, Lieutenant Governor of Ontario, presented the awards at a ceremony on June 24 during the 4th Annual Winetario event at George Brown College. The NC Teaching Winery 2017 Gastronomy Chardonnay was a standout win among big names in wine for overall excellence, regardless of vintage or varietal, including Peller Estates, Jackson-Triggs, and Trius. The winning wines were chosen from 542 wines submitted by 78 wineries. The variety was created for Les Marmitons Niagara, a gastronomic and social club of men who share a common interest in food, wine and the culinary arts.

“All of you have made remarkable wines, and each is richly deserving of these awards,” said Dowdeswell in her opening remarks. “And how wonderful it is to see the Niagara College Teaching Winery in the winners’ circle this year! Not only are you pioneers of education in the field of winemaking in Ontario, but your students are already making good on their promise. Your achievement bodes well for the whole industry.”

Steve Gill, general manager, Niagara College Learning Enterprises, attended the award ceremony. “The Lieutenant Governor’s Award for Excellence in Ontario Wines is a testament to applied learning at Niagara College,” said Gill. “Not only did our students play a key role in producing this award-winning wine from our Teaching Winery, we are tremendously proud of the winemakers behind many of the other award-winning wines who are graduates of Niagara College’s wine programs – including our own Niagara College Teaching Winery winemaker Gavin Robertson.”

‘It’s always great to see our Teaching Winery products do well in competitions because it demonstrates to our students – who are very much a part of our everyday winemaking operations – that the lessons that we deliver in lecture and labs hold true when scaled-up in commercial application,” said Gavin Robertson, winemaker and instructor at NC’s Teaching Winery. “Our hope as instructors is that this marriage of science and practice provides a sound foundation for our students to enter the workforce and become leaders, producing their own award-winning wines and also contributing to the growth and development of the Canadian wine industry in other significant ways.”

In addition to Robertson, who graduated from the College’s Winery and Viticulture Technician program in 2011, many of the award-winning wineries are staffed by winemakers who are graduates of NC’s Winery and Viticulture Technician program. They include Chris Frey, winemaker at Megalomaniac (2009 graduate), Yvonne Irvine, assistant winemaker at Creekside Estates (2008 graduate), Paul Pender, winemaker at Tawse Estates (2006 graduate), and Allison Findlay, assistant winemaker at Flat Rock Cellars (2014 graduate).

The award-winning wine is available at Niagara College’s Wine Visitor + Education Centre, located at the Niagara-on-the-Lake Campus (135 Taylor Rd., Niagara-on-the-Lake, ON). Proceeds from sales support student learning. Visit niagaracollegewine.ca

Niagara College’s Teaching Winery is the first and only commercial teaching winery in Canada. It is located at the College’s Niagara-on-the-Lake Campus, along with the NC Teaching Brewery and – the latest addition in September 2018 – the NC Teaching Distillery which were also the first of their kind in Canada.

Niagara College offers more than 130 diploma, bachelor degree and advanced level programs; as well as more than 600 credit, vocational and general interest Part-Time Studies courses. Areas of specialization include food and wine sciences, advanced technology, media, applied health and community safety, supported by unique learning enterprises in food, wine, beer, spirits, horticulture and esthetics. For more information visit niagaracollege.ca.


Media inquiries, please contact:

Michael Wales
Manager, Corporate Communications
Office: 905 735-2211 ext. 7773
Cell: 905 328-4101
[email protected]

Andrew Korchok
Communications Consultant
Office: 905 641-2252 ext. 7430
Cell: 905 329-1642
[email protected]

Niagara College seeks next Many Hands Project recipient


Niagara College is ready to dedicate ‘many hands’ to assisting Niagara’s most vulnerable citizens, and is seeking a recipient for its next Many Hands Project.

Applications are now being accepted for the College’s 2019-2020 Many Hands Project. The 23rd annual Many Hands Project will provide resources for much needed programing to a Niagara-based non-profit organization. The value of the project will be approximately $5,000.

Run by the Event Management graduate certificate program of NC’s School of Hospitality, Tourism and Sport, the Many Hands Project has been assisting non-profit organizations throughout Niagara since 1998. Event Management students will plan and execute fundraising events throughout the 2019-2020 academic year to raise money for the selected recipient. The project will rejuvenate the facilities of a local non-profit organization in a one- or two-day upgrade, or provide resources for programming that supports Niagara Region’s vulnerable citizens. Not-for-profit agencies and organizations based in the Niagara region are welcome to apply.

“Niagara College is proud to continue its Many Hands Project, which is an example of applied learning at its best,” said Damian Goulbourne, associate dean of NC’s School of Hospitality, Tourism and Sport.

“Students in our Event Management program gain hands-on experience in planning special events, along with important lessons in community service and leadership, while helping to make a difference in the community at the same time,” said  Christine Blane, faculty and program coordinator for NC’s Event Management program.

The most recent recipient to the College’s Many Hands Project was Pathstone Mental Health. In 2019, Event Management students raised more than $40,800 for Pathstone: $35,858 was raised by hosting a series of fundraising events, while $5,000 was donated by Canadian Tire Bank – a long-time sponsor and supporter of the Many Hands Project. Funds were dedicated to supporting play therapy at Pathstone, which treats Niagara children who are diagnosed with mental health issues.

Applications for the 2019-2020 Many Hands Project must be submitted by August 23, 2019.  View application here: Many Hands Project Application 2019-20. The selected non-profit organization is expected to be announced during the fall of 2019.

For more information about the Many Hands Project, visit niagaracollege.ca/manyhands.

Event Management is a one-year graduate certificate program at Niagara College that prepares graduates for a career in a fast-paced and multifaceted industry. Students develop skills in planning and logistics, public relations, marketing and sponsorship strategies, and volunteer and risk management in a highly experiential learning environment.

Niagara College offers more than 130 diploma, bachelor degree and advanced level programs; as well as more than 600 credit, vocational and general interest Part-Time Studies courses. Areas of specialization include food and wine sciences, advanced technology, media, applied health and community safety, supported by unique learning enterprises in food, wine, beer, distilling, horticulture and esthetics. For more information visit niagaracollege.ca.



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