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Our Story

Carlton Trail College Logo on light and dark green background.

Saskatchewan’s post-secondary system began to change when a Saskatchewan Government advisory committee, chaired by Ron Faris, toured the province to investigate the continuing education needs of Saskatchewan.   The report presented the Saskatchewan Community College model where local resources could be utilized to provide learning opportunities to local residents.

In 1973, the Saskatchewan Government passed the Community Colleges Act. “Pilot projects’’ were established in and around Humboldt, Swift Current, Yorkton-Melville and La Ronge. A Community Developer from the Department of Continuing Education, Ken Rodenbush was placed in Humboldt to begin the process of establishing a Community College.   Brother Bede Hubbard from St. Peter’s College was also recruited to assist.

This region’s first Board Members were appointed on June 29, 1973 and included Ed McConnell and Marie Buschmann from Humboldt, Ed Schulte from Englefeld, Len Rundvall from Naicam, Grace Strong from Drake, Florence Altrogge from Middle Lake, Jean Warner from Watson, and Rev. Gordon Cole from Lanigan. Ed McConnell was elected as the first Board Chair. The role of the Board was to develop a mission statement and policy by which the College would deliver a broad range of adult education for rural Saskatchewan.

Following their appointments, the Board hired administrative staff to put policy into operation. The initial staff consisted of Principal and Chief Executive Officer Lorne Johnson, Secretary-Treasurer Len Bobinski and Secretary Wendy Haidy. Program Co-coordinators were then hired to work with volunteer committees to identify needs and deliver programs. The first Program Coordinators were Glen Stumborg, Bob Welsh and Helen Warner. The first Information Officer was Hugo Tiessen.

In the winter of 1973/74, a contest was held to name the College. The Board of Directors reviewed a list of submitted names and selected “Carlton Trail Community College.” This name had been submitted by Fr. Maurice Weber from St. Peter’s College.

For a short time in 1973, the College was located in Humboldt in the Martinuk Building, 714 Main Street, Humboldt. The College administration then moved to the Marshal Building at the corner of 6th Avenue and 9th Street.   In 1979, the College moved to the former Creamery Building at 623 7th Street.

When the College started in 1973, it served 34 communities north of the Yellowhead Highway extending to the northeast to Pleasantdale and to the northwest to Wakaw. In the following year, the region expanded southward to the Qu’Appelle Valley and eastward to Highway 35. Within this newer region were 86 communities and 44,000 adults.

In 1987, the Regional Colleges Act replaced the Community Colleges Act. All Saskatchewan Community Colleges were reorganized and the College became “Carlton Trail Regional College”. The mandate and funding were changed to emphasize more credit programming and training for employment. Non-credit programming was de-emphasized.

The College area was again expanded to serve an area of 45 Rural Municipalities in east-central Saskatchewan, spanning from St. Brieux in the north, to Lumsden in the south, to Wadena in the east, to the outskirts of Saskatoon. To serve this large area, offices were opened in Wynyard, Watrous, Davidson and Semans. In 2000, the College moved the Semans office to Southey.

For many years, the College maintained principal administrative offices and classrooms in Humboldt, as well as offices in Davidson, Southey, Watrous and Wynyard and classrooms in Punnichy, Wakaw, and other communities. In 1984, a dedicated welding training facility was developed in Humboldt in the former Humboldt Journal Press facility. In 2011, the Davidson office was closed to refocus resources into needed areas.   In February 2012, the College administrative offices and classrooms moved from its location on 7th Street to new facilities, operated jointly with the City of Humboldt and the Horizon School Division, on the west side of Humboldt.  In June 2017, the Southey office was closed.

In December 2015, the College purchased a church from the Village of Punnichy to establish a training centre to serve the growing education, training and student services needs of adult learners in Punnichy and the surrounding area.  Renovations to the building were completed and the Four Winds Learning Centre officially opened in December 2017.

Between 2009 and 2010, a proposal to merge Carlton Trail Regional College and St. Peter’s College was put forth to the Saskatchewan Ministry of Advanced Education, Employment and Labour. Throughout the consultation process, concerns were raised about the state of operations and organization structure of both organizations. Media reported the concerns and the public perception of both organizations was tainted. The proposal was denied. During this period of negative public perception, the Carlton Trail College Board was asked to resign, and a temporary administrator was appointed.

In 2011, The Ministry of Advanced Education, Employment and Immigration appointed a new Board of Directors and a re-organizational process began. In August 2012, Dr. Ivan Yackel was appointed as President and Chief Executive Officer. Under the new leadership, in the spring of 2013, the new Board launched a new strategic plan, which identified three strategic goals:

  1. Achieve Student Success
  2. Serve Business, Industry, and Communities
  3. Attain Organizational Stability

Also during the spring of 2013, the College’s Board approved changing the name to Carlton Trail College and the use of a new logo.

In August 2016, upon Dr. Ivan Yackel's retirement, Mr. Ralph Trosche was appointed as President and Chief Executive Officer.

In February 2017, Shelley Romanyszyn-Cross was appointed as Interim President and Chief Executive Officer. In August 2017, Romanyszyn-Cross was appointed as President and Chief Executive Officer.

Since 1973, College programming has enabled students to take education and training close to home. Some of the longest running programs include the Secretarial training program (now called Office Administration), Welding, and the Adult High School Completion Program (now called Adult Basic Education).

Today, Carlton Trail College offers a wide array of programs and courses in business, healthcare, human services, trades, technology, adult basic education, English as a second language, industry training, health and safety, computers training and professional and personal development.

Services offered include academic advising, career exploration and planning, college financial aid advising, personal advising, scholarships and transitioning to employment supports. The College also offers customized education and training for business and industry.

The College continues to maintain offices in Humboldt, Watrous and Wynyard and classrooms throughout the region, and employs over 40 administrative and program delivery staff. In addition, the College employs instructional staff for a wide variety of credit programs and hires teaching staff as needed for non-credit programs and courses.

For more information about Carlton Trail College, contact…

Carlton Trail College