Four Cegeps offering specialized technical programs

École nationale du meuble et de l’ébénisterie

The École nationale du meuble et de l’ébénisterie creates cohorts of innovative professionals who become designers, business owners and sought-after woodworkers. Upon completing the school’s three-year technical diploma in furniture and woodworking, graduates work in areas such as residential and office furniture, and home renovations. Nine-month professional diplomas are also offered in upholstery and furniture finishing. The school has two campuses—in Montreal and Victoriaville. Students in Victoriaville have access to a 65,000-sq.-foot woodworking workshop. On this campus, they can also seek housing with the Cégep de Victoriaville’s residence. Affordable housing options can also be found in close proximity to the school. During the school year, students can display their work at the yearly student exhibit held on both campuses. For the Christmas market, students develop a business plan and sell their creations to real buyers. The school also holds a Gala Méritas each year to highlight students’ achievements and community involvement.

Institut maritime du Québec (IMQ)

Located in Rimouski, the Institut maritime du Québec has been training future captains, researchers, naval architects and mechanical engineers since 1944. The college’s emergency training centre (the Centre de formation aux mesures d’urgence) is a 30,000-sq.-foot facility in Lévis that includes a fire station, a diving pool, computer science labs and equipment for navigation simulations. It provides students with access to cutting-edge technology and equipment to help them safely learn to face real-life threats.

Students can study in technical diploma programs such as logistics and transport, marine navigation, professional diving and marine mechanical engineering. Thanks to the IMQ’s agreements with more than 30 companies, the institute offers internships that include food and board at sea during the school year and the summer.

Institut de technologie agroalimentaire (ITA)

The Institut de technologie agroalimentaire offers seven technical college diplomas on two campuses, one in Saint-Hyacinthe and one in La Pocatière. The Saint-Hyacinthe campus is near the Yamaska River, 50 km from Montreal, while the La Pocatière campus is in a small town of the same name in the Kamouraska region. College attestations—shorter college diplomas that exclude general education courses—and one-year professional diplomas are available for professionals working in animal production.

Among its specialized programs, the ITA offers career diplomas in agricultural and mechanical engineering, landscape and commercial horticulture, and equine technical studies. Students can complete a 1,245-hour diploma in animal production to work in animal husbandry or as professional grooms. The college has agreements with four Quebec universities for students who wish to complete a diploma of college studies and bachelor springboard program in agronomy, biology and landscape architecture with either the Université de Montréal, McGill University, the École de technologie supérieure and Université Laval. The ITA’s many facilities include a pilot plant for dairy production, a stable, a school farm, a greenhouse and an agricultural engineering workshop for in-class training. Internships and field trips are possible on almost every continent for most programs.

Institut de tourisme et d’hôtellerie du Québec (ITHQ)

The ITHQ is located in the heart of Montreal, a few steps from the Sherbrooke metro station. The institute offers multiple one-year professional diplomas in fine cuisine, pastry and wine, three technical college diplomas and two bachelor’s degrees in hospitality that have competitive admissions. With 100 teachers, the school offers courses in professional baking, fine cuisine, Italian cuisine and more. Teachers include professional chefs and several experienced managers from the hospitality, tourism, hotel and restaurant sectors. For hands-on training on campus, the institute houses one bar, two restaurants and one four-star hotel, all run by students. The ITHQ also advocates for sustainable development by selecting only local foods and eco-friendly management of fish and seafood supplies. In 2020, the institute won the Clé Verte prize for its green initiatives.

ITHQ is one of the rare institutions to offer a wine-waiting program, training generations of sommeliers each year. The college has many partnerships with chain hotels such as the Marriott, the Fairmont, Relais & Châteaux and Club Med; students can access paid internships after graduation. 

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