Generous gift from local family will allow growth in engineering at Lethbridge College and nursing at the University of Lethbridge

The trades and technologies facility at Lethbridge College and the Bachelor of Nursing After Degree (BNAD) program at the University of Lethbridge will receive a boost from Al and Vera Kenwood, local business owners, the two Lethbridge post-secondary institutions announced today.

This generous gift will see $25,000 go toward the Lethbridge College trades and technologies facility in the area of Engineering Technologies and $25,000 toward the BNAD program at the University of Lethbridge. The BNAD program is a joint program of Lethbridge College and the University of Lethbridge, with the first year of the program offered at the college and the second and third years offered at the university. Al was a civil engineer and Vera was a nurse, and both strongly believe in education and the value of investing in these industries and trades at a local level.

"Vera and I have enjoyed a long and happy life in Lethbridge raising our family and involving ourselves in the business community at a time when the city was growing and defining its role as a leader in educational opportunities,” says Al Kenwood.  “Our desire to support Lethbridge College and the University of Lethbridge stems from our pride in our community and the important roles each institution plays in advancing educational pursuits for their students."

The trades and technologies facility will position the college as the institution for trades training in southern Alberta. Ground was broken on the project in April 2014 and the facility will be open and ready for students in the fall of 2017.

“Lethbridge College is thankful for the generous gift from the Kenwood family,” says Dr. Paula Burns, Lethbridge College President and CEO. “Through this gift, the college will add value to our new facilities which will help us support a vibrant learning environment to engage our students with creative instructional technology.”

With a 165,000 square foot facility that will support more than 880 new learners across eight trades areas and four technology programs including the Engineering Technologies programs, Lethbridge College will support new and emerging trends in trades and technologies programs and practices, including skills simulation and new equipment for both training and applied research.

"This thoughtful gift from the Kenwood family will help Lethbridge College continue to provide our engineering students with access to cutting-edge technology and learning environments,” says Dr. Sandy Vanderburgh, dean of Applied Arts and Sciences.

Dr. Chris Hosgood, dean of the Faculty of Health Sciences at the University of Lethbridge, says students in their final year of the BNAD program will benefit from the largesse of the Kenwood family.

“This scholarship will encourage the best applicants and support them through their studies,” says Hosgood. “We appreciate the fact the Kenwoods choose to invest in our students and local post-secondary institutions.”

The BNAD program is offered to students who have completed a bachelor’s degree in another discipline and acknowledges students’ previous degree accomplishments while still providing the full nursing education experience. Importantly, the program also creates a new path into baccalaureate nursing and the profession.

“Students in the BNAD program are a perfect fit at a liberal arts institution like the U of L. They are students who come into the program with a wealth of experience and then are able to focus that experience into the context of nursing. They are students who are inquisitive, broad-minded and hard-working,” says Dr. Mark Pijl Zieber, a Health Sciences professor at the University of Lethbridge.

Al Kenwood was raised in Lethbridge after his parents emigrated from Lithuania. He trained in civil engineering at McGill University. Vera was raised in Taber and trained in nursing at the Sacred Heart in Spokane, Washington. They married in 1952 and raised their family in Lethbridge. Al was a Foundation Board Member at Lethbridge College in 1987/88.

The Kenwood’s family business has been in operation for 57 years as owners of Kenwood Construction and Engineering Ltd. from 1957 to 1982 when Mr. Kenwood diversified his business holdings by developing various commercial properties.

For more information on the college’s trades and technologies facility, visit For more information on the university’s BNAD program, visit