New partnership with Germany for Alberni’s Pacific Coast U

Germany paves way for more international agreements and the Alberni university isn't even open yet.

Wolfgang Zimmermann

Pacific Coast University has signed an historic agreement with a university from Germany, and the Port Alberni educational institution hasn’t even opened its doors.

Joachim Breuer, the director general for German Social Accident Insurance brought the agreement already signed by the dean of the University of Bonn-Rhine-Sieg in St. Augustine.

What this means is a collaboration in disability management and back-to-work curriculum between the two institutions. Students and professors alike from Germany and Canada will be able to participate in exchanges. And it means students from Germany will be coming to Port Alberni once the university opens in 2012.

Breuer represents the largest workers’ compensation board in the world, and to have that kind of backing is important, said Wolfgang Zimmermann, executive director of the National Institute for Disability Management and Research—which will run Pacific Coast U.

More than 1,000 disability managers in Germany have trained through NIDMAR, he said.

Pacific Coast University “is really a diamond you have in your hand,” Breuer said. “I’m sure when you look back in 10 years everyone who is working in the field of disability management will know the PCU here.”

Zimmermann hopes now that Germany has stepped up to the plate that other countries will follow suit. The University of Queensland in Australia has expressed interest in signing a similar agreement, he said. Another professor from Cornell University in New York will be here to view the facility next week. Last week a delegation from Korea took a tour, and NIDMAR finalized an agreement with the government of Malaysia too, Zimmermann said.

Alberni-Pacific Rim MLA Scott Fraser was on hand for the signing, as was NDP labour critic Raj Chouhan. The university is a big deal for Port Alberni “on a global scale,” Fraser said. “This is cutting edge. We should be the leaders of the world here.”

Chouhan said the province of British Columbia has so far not supported the development of back-to-work curriculum at Pacific Coast University, which is disappointing.

“This is one project where there should be no politics played with it,” Chouhan said. “Regardless of which party we belong to, we should be supporting it.”

editor@albernivalleynews.com

Just Posted

One hurt in Gertrude Street Bridge accident

Driver suffers medical emergency in Port Alberni crash

Motorcyclist caught driving 117 km/h on Beaver Creek Road

Port Alberni man was driving in a posted 50 km/h zone

Port Alberni soapbox derby has new track

Lower Argyle Street will be open to racers under six

UPDATED: Somass River closed to sockeye fishery

Early closure aimed at conserving Great Central Lake stock

Heat warning issued for Vancouver Island

Temperatures expected to cool down later this week

VIDEO: Visual recap of Vancouver Island MusicFest

Walk Off The Earth, Passenger, Arlo Guthrie among highlights

Trudeau’s youth council divided over Trans Mountain pipeline purchase

A letter signed by 16 past and present members was made public today, asking the federal government to reverse course

Hulk Hogan reinstated into wrestling Hall of Fame

Hogan had used racial slurs caught on video when talking about his daughter sleeping with a black man

Island wide crime spree leads to multiple charges against Cowichan Valley resident

Social Media and citizens of the North Island played a big role in solving the case.

‘Lava bomb’ through roof of tour boat injures 22 in Hawaii

“An explosion occurred near the shoreline hurling hot lava rocks towards the boat and injuring several passengers”

B.C. teen meets Nicolas Cage

Filming mob movie in downtown Vernon, B.C.

Critics claim Trump “defended a tyrant”

Trump questions US intel, not Putin, on Russia 2016 meddling

B.C. MLAs choose new children’s watchdog

Jennifer Charlesworth has worked in government, social services

Most Read