Bruce Power, through the Ontario Nuclear Innovation Instittute, has announced a $500,000 local Education Development Fund.
President & CEO Mike Rencheck, speaking at the 3rd annual Economic Development and Innovation Summit at Bruce Power, says the first $100,000 will be spent next year.
Rencheck says the fund will have a focus on science, technology, engineering and mathematics, as well as environmental and Indigenous cultural awareness.
He says the fund will enhance educational opportunities for students in the region, besides those that will be part of the Institute.
The money will introduce topics such as Artificial Intelligence, cyber-security, machine learning and advanced robotics.
Rencheck says it's exactly these types of skills that will be needed in the future to advance and prosper.
He says they're excited to present a unique opportunity, through the institute, to be a global host for innovative technologies, while also linking to local elementary and secondary schools, post secondary institutions and training centres, bringing the education closer to home.
Rencheck points out these types of facilities and opportunities are almost always found in large urban areas, but the Institute and the Education Development Fund will bring the same thing to the rural area, specifically in Bruce, Grey and Huron counties in the hopes of keeping students in the region or giving them a reason to come back.
He says the fund will be accepting formal applications early in 2019 to apply for certain projects to begin work on and to look at different types of educational opportunities that can be set up for the children in the area.
When asked for an example by Bayshore Broadcasting News, Rencheck pointed to last summer's Space Camp that was set up where children who took part, were able to launch cameras into space to take pictures of Bruce County and then bring the pictures back to study.
The Summit, where Rencheck spoke, had about 150 people from municipal governments, Bruce County. local economic development professionals and local business organizations, along with Bruce Power suppliers.
Those attending learned there are now 43 business partners of Bruce Power that have set up shop in the region to assist with the Life Extension Program refurbishment project, with more on the horizon.
1.8-billion-dollars will be invested in assets by the end of 2019.
Year to date, 3.5-billion dollars worth of contracts have been issued with another 1.5-billion-dollars of contracts pending.
Thousands of jobs are being created directly and indirectly across Ontario as a result of the Life Extension Program.