* Please note that all classes given by Lower St. Lawrence educational institutions are in French, except for language courses, and classes given at the Métis-sur-Mer school which serves an English community. *
For the people of the Lower St. Lawrence, the education sector is first and foremost represented by educational institutions located throughout the region that offer a wide variety of quality programs and infrastructures, from the elementary level to the university level. Thanks to these institutions, young people from the region may, if they so desire, complete their studies and training without ever having to leave the Lower St. Lawrence.
For students from other parts of Québec
and elsewhere in the world
Studying in the Lower St. Lawrence means being able to spend this part of your life in friendly institutions, surrounded by pristine natural settings. These institutions are known for their small groups of students and personalized teaching, as well as their teachers who make themselves readily available to students, and the cultural dynamism that can be felt throughout the Lower St. Lawrence.
*Cégep : Acronym for the French term "collège d'enseignement général et professionnel" (college of general and vocational education) used to designate two educational pathways: preparatory courses prior to university and terminal vocational training for all others.
Founded in 1969, UQAR belongs to the University of Québec network that is made up of ten universities, écoles supérieures and research institutes spread across the province of Québec. A network of this kind represents a major asset for establishing partnerships in teaching and research, and for taking advantage of means of telecommunication.
The Université du Québec à Rimouski offers programs primarily in Rimouski and at the Campus de Lévis. In collaboration with its five regional offices, UQAR also offers certain courses in about twenty towns, over a vast area stretching from Lévis to the Magdalen Islands, and from Baie-Comeau to Carleton. This makes UQAR the most decentralized university in the province of Québec.
UQAR now has about 4,500 students, of which almost 2,000 are studying full-time. The majority of them are at the Rimouski campus. The others are enrolled at the Campus de Lévis or elsewhere, through regional offices located in Rivière-du-Loup, Baie-Comeau, Gaspé, Matane and Carleton. There are more than 170 foreign students enrolled at UQAR who come for the most part from France, French-speaking Africa and Latin America. In this way, daily life at the university is enriched by the rhythms and accents of these people from all over the globe. Several cooperation agreements have also been signed between UQAR and other universities from around the world.
College Education Available Throughout the Region
Located 135 kilometres east of Québec City in a predominantly rural area, the Cégep de La Pocatière is built on an enchanting site that is readily accessible by a highway that runs alongside the St. Lawrence River.
Since its opening in 1969, the Cégep de La Pocatière has been characterized by its students' high rate of success, along with the innovative, distinctive aspects of varied training programs that are offered to its clientele that comes from the surrounding area as well as from all over Québec. Since 1983, it has managed a technology transfer centre in the fields of advanced applied physics technologies and public transit. In 2001, it equipped itself with a Centre intégré de formation en métallurgie (Integrated Metallurgical Training Centre) and, in 2002, with the Centre de photonique du Québec inc. (Photonics Centre of Québec Inc.) whose mission is to encourage the growth of photonics and optical technologies and to support productivity improvement efforts in all Québec companies.
The Cégep de La Pocatière, which is able to welcome some 1,000 students, is a personalized training environment. It strives to carry out an educational project focused on autonomy, competence and commitment.
The Institut de technologie agroalimentaire du Québec (ITA), La Pocatière Campus, is a college training centre specialized in the field of agri-food. There are about 400 students receiving training at this institution, along with 80 specialized teachers, 15 technicians and several other people who are all working together towards a common goal: to offer students the best possible training.
With international cooperation, our raison d'être is to prepare students for the labour market, especially as concerns the exchange of agri-food products and services world-wide. ITA contributes to regional development and the technological development of bio-food companies, particularly in regard to agroecology and improved competitiveness.
The Cégep de Rivière-du-Loup has fourteen programs that lead to a Diploma of Collegial Studies. Four of them are part of the pre-university branch whereas the other ten are part of the technical/vocational branch. The cégep has specific training niches in Techniques d'intervention en loisir (recreation facilitator; it is the only college that offers this program outside of Montréal) and in Arts, with six programs linked to the pre-university sector, applied arts and continuing education sector. The cégep also offers an Attestation of Collegial Studies in international cooperation, as well as four cooperative education programs.
In addition to the quality education that it gives to its 1,300 students, the Cégep de Rivière-du-Loup also provides a stimulating environment that is open to projects, continuous educational support, and top quality technology support. The cégep is known for its friendly atmosphere and active student life; it is teeming with all kinds of social and sporting events.
The Cégep de Rimouski, of national and international renown, is a general and vocational educational institution that was created in 1967. It currently offers 24 programs of pre-university and technical/vocational studies in various fields, including 18 that lead directly to the labour market. The cégep employs more than 600 multi-skilled people, including close to 350 teachers.
Some 3,100 students are enrolled in regular education, and more than 4,000 adults are enrolled in continuing education in various fields of specialization each year. Both the high rate of graduates accepted to universities and the job placement rate of those who enter the labour market attest to the quality of the training provided.
The cégep uses interesting applied teaching methods to encourage learning and the development of expertise and personal skills, as well as the transfer and integration of learning. The skills-based teaching approach is favoured in all of its programs.
Founded in Rimouski in 1944, the Institut maritime du Québec is the largest maritime training centre in Canada, and it heads up maritime training in Québec.
.The institute trains qualified workers in five areas of specialization: naval architecture, navigation, mechanical marine engineering, professional diving and transportation logistics.
Guided by an advisory committee made up of representatives from the marine and transportation industries as well as the Québec Department of Education, the institute is constantly adapting its training programs to meet the industry's present and future needs.
The Institut maritime du Québec enjoys a top-notch reputation in Canada and internationally for the quality training that it offers and its ever increasing expertise. On the international level, it is not uncommon for the institute to be asked to supervise cooperation projects.
The Cégep de Matane is a one-of-a-kind college! And for a very good reason. This cégep, with its small-campus environment, offers one of the best student-teacher ratios in the entire college network, as well as cultural and sporting events that encourage personal growth. The quality of the support and teaching offered, the accessibility to services and infrastructures, and the excellent success rate of students at the cégep are part of the distinctive elements that explain why graduates from the Cégep de Matane greatly appreciate the time they have spent there.
The Cégep de Matane has been part of the Québec network of cégeps since 1970. It offers a dozen programs, several of which are exclusive to the Cégep de Matane in eastern Québec. As such, it has one of the best photography schools in Québec, a cooperative education tourism program, a cooperative education urban planning program connected to the needs of municipalities, and an agricultural company management program offered in collaboration with a network of partner farms in the area. Since the fall of 2001, it also offers college training that opens the door to the multimedia industry, thanks to its Diploma of Collegial Studies in Techniques d'intégration multimédia (multimedia).
The Centre matapédien d'études collégiales (CMÉC), founded in 1995, is the youngest in the family of college education centres in Québec. Since its opening, it has firmly rooted itself in the fertile soil of the Vallée de La Matapédia and the hearts of the people who live in the valley. The centre is located at the forks of rich salmon rivers, at the heart of the Lower St. Lawrence's largest forest reserve. It is a true territorial jewel that offers top quality, modern training.
Its graduates can be found in university faculties, even those with limited enrolment, or in meaningful technician-related jobs. The existence of very high-speed teleinformatic facilities, as well as the fact that many students have done internships in Europe and Latin America, attest to this institution's openness to the outside world.
Other Specialized Educational Institutions
The Conservatoire de musique de Rimouski opened its doors in the fall of 1973. It is part of a network of seven institutions from seven regions of Québec. Located in the heart of the city, in Rimouski's historic district, close to the college, regional museum, cathedral, maritime institute and the site of a future performing arts centre, the Conservatoire de musique de Rimouski has, since 1973, been devoted to the training of professional musicians and the cultural and musical development of the surrounding area.
The conservatory recruits its students through competitions and offers specialized training at many levels, ranging from elementary to bachelor. Its clientele (about 60 students per year) is equally divided into two levels: elementary/high school and college/university.
Trois-Pistoles French Immersion School
Created by the University of Western Ontario, the Trois-Pistoles French Immersion School has offered French immersion programs for more than 70 years. The school gives specialized French classes to people of all ages from all walks of life: students, teachers, politicians, business people, doctors, etc. In order to diversify their services, the school advertises its courses across the North American continent.
School Boards and Private Schools
Four school boards cover the Lower St. Lawrence region with close to 150 elementary schools and high schools, as well as vocational centres and adult education centres. There are also two private schools: the Collège de Sainte-Anne-de-la-Pocatière and the École secondaire Notre-Dame de Rivière-du-Loup.
(Kamouraska and Rivière-du-Loup RCMs)
(Témiscouata and Les Basques RCMs)
(Rimouski-Neigette and La Mitis RCMs)
(Matane and La Matapédia RCMs)
(La Pocatière RCMs)