One of Lethbridge’s largest plumbing companies is investing in Lethbridge College, as today Simpson Plumbing announced a $200,000 gift to benefit skilled trades and technologies training.
Simpson Plumbing’s gift was spurred by the development and implementation of the new Plumber Apprenticeship program which was launched by Lethbridge College for the January 2016 semester. The program allows Simpson Plumbing to keep its apprentices in town for the first time, instead of having to send them away for training.
“I am very proud to be a partner with Lethbridge College,” says Simpson Plumbing owner and President Roger Simpson. “Having the Plumber Apprenticeship program added to their existing Alberta Trades programs shows continued commitment and growth in investment of our southern Alberta students and community.”
The generous gift will create the Simpson Plumbing classroom, which will be located in phase two of Lethbridge College’s trades and technologies facility. The first phase of the facility officially opened on Sep. 30, 2015, and created capacity for the college to offer Plumbing Apprenticeship training for the first time in its history.
“To have Plumber Apprenticeship students on our campus this past academic year was an exciting step forward for all of us at the college,” says Lethbridge College President and CEO Dr. Paula Burns. “Simpson Plumbing’s gift is proof that we are on the right track and we are thankful for their commitment to helping grow and develop our program.”
Simpson Plumbing is a locally-owned family business that has served Lethbridge for more than 30 years. Owner and President Roger Simpson is currently the chairman of the Local Apprenticeship Committee and was instrumental in the creation of Lethbridge College’s Plumber Apprenticeship program. Simpson is also past-president of the Lethbridge Construction Association, and was a key supporter of the group’s $100,000 donation to the college in April.
“This first-class building will offer a state-of-the-art educational experience in a modern learning space,” says Simpson. “This is an investment in existing Simpson Plumbing staff as well as future apprentices in southern Alberta.”
Roger Simpson started with Simpson Plumbing as an apprentice in 1989 before taking over as President of the company from his father, Bill, in 2003. Roger’s son, Justin Fisher, continues the family legacy, working as a journeyman plumber, and in 2015, at just 19-years-old, he won the national Skills Canada competition for plumbing.
When completed in 2017, the new trades and technologies facility will be the largest centre of its kind south of Calgary and will house students in multiple skilled trades and technology programs.