by Rafael Benedek
Camosun Nexus
October 30, 2002

The opening of an office at the new Technology Park, next door to Camosun's Interurban campus, is a step in the right direction, bringing Camosun students and faculty closer to potential clients and investors.

Camosun President Liz Ashton envisioned the benefit of having a college presence at the Vancouver Island Technology Park (VITP) and set about opening an office where it's expected the new location will create more business interactions with Tech Park firms and clients.  In addition, it will develop more contacts for co-op placements and enhance the college's contact with the community.

Up until now, the National Research Council's Industrial Research Assistance Program (IRAP) has had an office at Interurban campus, but Bill Sturrock, the IRAP Industrial Technology Advisor (ITA) has moved down the road to occupy the shiny new Camosun office at the Technology Park. 

Sturrock, one of 260 ITAs across Canada, acts as 'portal' to a vast range of programs and services offered by IRAP.  He is a professional you can trust with your innovative ideas and business plans, who knows the Canadian innovation network by heart and can guide you through the maze of opportunities it offers. 

IRAP is a cross-Canada network of experts involved in bringing research concepts to the marketplace, through promotion of innovation in small and medium sized enterprises, youth employment, women entrepreneurship and aboriginal businesses.

Last year, close to 500 industrial projects involving BC's most innovative companies were supported with combined funding of close to $14 million from IRAP and its Canadian Technology Partners. 

To help increase the survival rate and success of Canadian businesses in an extremely competitive global market, IRAP links them into 'community innovation clusters'.  Ultimately, IRAP's various initiatives boost Canadian industry and economy. 

"It's a win-win situation for everyone involved," says Sturrock.  

Students should make their co-op employers aware that partial funding of their salaries may be available through IRAP for research and development projects.

Camosun students and faculty are invited to drop by the Tech Park and visit Sturrock in his new office. 

The office can also be utilized by other college departments.  For information on availability, contact Penny Waterman, 250.370.4543. 

Bill Sturrock can be reached at 250.483.3215.  For more details visit the IRAP website: www.nrc.ca/irap