J.D. Irving, Limited, the University of New Brunswick Saint John and New Brunswick Community College announce digital talent pipeline initiative for New Brunswick

SAINT JOHN, New Brunswick, Oct. 13, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The McKenna Institute, New Brunswick Community College (NBCC) and the University of New Brunswick Saint John are excited to announce the development of a new digital pathways program for industry-related careers, made possible through a $1 million gift from J.D. Irving, Limited.

Focused on developing a talent pipeline to improve digital technology competitiveness for organizations in New Brunswick, the pathways program will invest in student scholarships and bursaries at both NBCC and UNB Saint John, for multiple programs related to digital technology.

The fund will also be used to improve existing curriculum surrounding digital technology at both institutions; to explore opportunities for joint applied research; and to align initiatives with sectors while ensuring skills security through the creation of flexible, transferable pathways for learners.

“An investment in New Brunswick’s next generation is an investment in New Brunswick’s future,” said Jim Irving, co-CEO of J.D. Irving, Limited. “UNB and NBCC have been vital partners in supporting the province’s economic growth and development and we are confident in the future of our young people here at home.”

"We are deeply grateful for this generous contribution from our partners at JDI, which will help us continue to empower our students and the community at large with the skills and opportunities needed to excel in the digital economy,” said Mary Butler, president & CEO at NBCC. “We look forward to collaborating with our partners to make this vision a reality, while fostering innovation and driving economic growth across the province."

“UNB and J.D. Irving, Limited share a long history of working to build a better New Brunswick. We are tremendously grateful to JDI for this investment in New Brunswick’s digital future. Likewise, it is exciting to build on established partnerships between UNB and NBCC. This collaboration is a great example of our shared commitment to fostering a strong, qualified generation of leaders in the digital economy,” said Dr. Petra Hauf, vice-president Saint John at UNB.


J.D. Irving, Limited was founded in 1882. Today, with more than 19,000 full-time employees, JDI has business units in agriculture, construction and equipment, consumer products, food, forestry and forestry products, retail and distribution, shipbuilding and industrial fabrication, and transportation and logistics. Over the past 140 years, JDI has grown into a diverse group of performance-driven enterprises. JDI believes in investing and building business with the skills of great employees, producing excellent products, giving superior service to valued customers — and then reinvesting again. JDI is giving back to our community by investing in the future. Investing in the next generation of the workforce is part of that commitment.


Founded in 2021, The McKenna Institute builds upon the life’s work of its benefactor, The Honourable Frank McKenna, PC, OC, ONB, KC, serving as a catalyst and a connector for academia, industry and government to foster a globally competitive digital economy and society in New Brunswick.


The University of New Brunswick (UNB) is Canada's oldest English-language university, and New Brunswick’s only national comprehensive university. Founded in 1785, the multi-campus institution has a rich history as well as a dynamic focus on innovation, experiential learning and entrepreneurship. UNB has more than 9,500 students from nearly 75 countries while several thousand more take UNB courses online and at partner institutions around the world.


As one of New Brunswick’s largest postsecondary education institutions, NBCC welcomes over 12,000 learners each year through quality-assured, relevant training opportunities. Supported by the Going Beyond campaign, NBCC is committed to accelerating skills development, innovating educational delivery, and reaching unprecedented numbers of New Brunswickers.

JDI, Limited
Anne McInerney, Vice President Communications
McInerney.Anne@jdirving.com | 506-651-9092

Charray Owen, Lead, Strategic Communications, New Brunswick Community College
charray.owen@nbcc.ca | (506) 440-9105

Kathleen McLaughlin, Media Relations Strategist, University of New Brunswick

A photo accompanying this announcement is available at https://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/5eead5bd-5238-4db2-8d4a-d840a9b99507