Wednesday, September 28th, 2011

Sprott-Shaw Community College: BC’s Oldest College

Sprott-Show Classroom

In 1903, Robert James Sprott partnered with William Henry Shaw to open the first location.

Today, Sprott-Shaw Community College has 12 campuses in BC. Each year, they train over 4500 students in areas such as healthcare, tourism, hospitality, business, administrative and international studies.

However, they started off far more modestly, nearly 110 years ago.

In 1903, Robert James Sprott partnered with William Henry Shaw to open the first Sprott-Shaw school, called Vancouver Business Institute. It was their first school, but their plan was to open four schools in Vancouver, one in Nanaimo and one more in Victoria.

A decade later in 1913, RJ Sprott and James Beatty opened Sprott-Shaw College in Victoria, which has endured two World Wars and the Great Depression and is still standing today.

Changing and adapting their curriculum has been important to their longevity over the years. During the Second World War, they designed programs to retrain military personnel in areas such as Morse Code, Radio Broadcasting and Aviation.

Now, their focus is on the principles of adult education theory, as they help their students get trained or up-trained for exciting careers. They have also opened their doors to students from across the globe, with over 500 international students. Diploma programs over 8 months are now eligible for Post-Graduation Work permit.

Sprott-Shaw now has campuses in Abbotsford, East Vancouver, Kamloops, Kelowna. Maple Ridge, Nanaimo, New Westminster, Penticton, Prince George, Surrey, Vancouver and Victoria.

Schools mentioned: Sprott-Shaw Community College

Ryan Leclaire
Author: Ryan Leclaire
Ryan has been writing for 7 years and has been featured in Chatelaine, Canadian Living and Cottage life.
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  1. Earl Says:

    While I believe that Sprott-Shaw does provide a valuable service, I do object to them having added “community” into their name.  A community college is generally known as a public college serving a particular community.  Sprott-Shaw does itself a disservice by adopting this misleading name.


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