Centennial College Yesterday and Today
Centennial College opened its doors on October 17, 1966 to welcome 514 students to its Warden Woods Campus, a former radar-instrument factory in Scarborough that was still being renovated. It made for a chaotic fall semester at Ontario’s first college of applied arts and technology — a cornerstone of former Premier William Davis’s legacy.
“We all realize that this is a new type of educational institution and we are determined to make it work,” remarked one Centennial student when asked about the construction noise and flickering lights. Students and faculty shared in the sense of breaking new academic ground, one that emphasized applied learning over theoretical lectures.
One of Centennial’s earliest successes was its “night school” or continuing education classes offered to working adults. The first CE course calendar in 1967 was just 24 pages and listed academic upgrading, credit courses and special interest classes, including arts and crafts. Centennial’s calendar became a hit as the notion of attending night classes drew a ready audience from the community.
Today, Centennial offers more than 1,000 part-time evening, weekend and online courses in everything from Accounting to XML markup language for online apps. While many courses are intended to augment professional skills applicable in the workplace, there’s no shortage of personal interest studies such as astronomy and healthy baking.
Curious? Check out centennialcollege.ca/part-time