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Aug. 4, 2020 | Tuesday
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COVID-19: Niagara College pitches in to help health care workers
Niagara CollegeĀ is producing 2,000 face shields at the Walker Advanced Manufacturing Centre using laser-cutting technology and computer design tools. (Supplied)

Niagara College is stepping up to provide support for local healthcare facilities struggling with COVID-19-related demands. Both campuses in Welland and Niagara-on-the-Lake are working toward creating and securing supplies earmarked for local healthcare.

The college’s teaching distillery has been operating throughout the campus closure – but not to create its signature artisan small-batch spirits. The distillery has been producing a 70 per cent alcohol disinfectant, which can be used for hand sanitizer and surface wipes, sine March 16.

The research lab at the Walker Advanced Manufacturing Innovation Centre is producing 2,000 face shields using laser-cutting technology and computer design tools. The project is funded by the Niagara College led Southern Ontario Network for Advanced Manufacturing Innovation through Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario contributions.

As well as manufacturing supplies, staff throughout the college have been taking stock of inventory to identify urgently needed personal protective equipment that can be donated to local healthcare workers.

Thousands of masks, including N95 and procedural masks, and thousands of gloves and hundreds of face shields will be provided in the coming days.

Equipment was collected from various areas of the college – from Community and Health Studies, Trades and Technology, Campus Safety, Trades and Technology, Academic and Liberal Studies, the School of Environment, and Human Resources.

Niagara College president Sean Kennedy said the college is training the healthcare workers and first responders of tomorrow.

“We know there is no greater inspiration than the tireless efforts of those who are working within the healthcare system in the face of this unprecedented challenge,” Kennedy said in a media statement. “We’re leveraging our college’s innovative spirit to provide support in any way we can.”

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