As B.C. revs up its skills training mandate, Kwantlen Polytechnic University (KPU) welcomes a skilled industry expert to lead the local drive.
A red seal heavy duty mechanic with experience in the heavy construction, road building, marine and equipment dealership sectors, Brian Haugen has assumed the position of dean of trades and technology at the university.
In his role, he will directly oversee the nearly 30 trades and technical foundation, citation, certificate, diploma and apprenticeship programs offered at KPU Tech in Cloverdale.
“I feel that my ‘boots on the ground’ experience in industry coupled with both private and public post-secondary experience have helped to prepare me for the challenging role of dean of trades and technology,” said Haugen. “It’s just as exciting a time for industry as it is for students. There are many opportunities out there, and at KPU, we’re going to help make them happen.”
In addition to his hands-on practical experience out in the field, Haugen has over 16 years of experience working in B.C.’s private and public post-secondary education systems.
Prior to joining KPU, he was an instructor and department head at Vancouver Community College’s school of transportation and trades.
“Brian is a big asset to KPU as we revitalize our skills, trades and technology agenda to meet the needs of our region and our province,” said KPU president and vice-chancellor Dr. Alan Davis.
“Not only does he come from industry — he has first-hand knowledge of what trades students need, and the background in post-secondary education to facilitate student success.
“We are thrilled to have his leadership as we grow both KPU Tech, and our ability to serve our communities.”
Under Haugen’s leadership to date, KPU hosted the Industry Training Authority (ITA) Apprentice Job Match Tool launch, which connects apprenticeship-seeking trades students with local employers. Plans to expand KPU’s programming to support B.C.’s Skills for Jobs Blueprint are also underway.
“I’m inspired every day working with the instructors and staff at KPU Tech. Like me, they are passionate about student and apprentice success, and I look forward to working with them to grow and broaden our technology and trades training offerings,” Haugen said.
For more information about trades and technology at KPU, visit: www.kpu.ca/trades.