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About Us

The Operating Engineers College (OEC) is an established, licensed and program accredited heavy equipment and mobile crane training facility located in Holyrood, Newfoundland on the Salmonier Line (45 kilometers west of St. John's).

The International Union of Operating Engineers, Local 904 set out in 1988 to identify its industry’s training needs and project requirements for the next 10 years.  As a result of the decision made by the Canada Employment & Immigration Commission in January 1988, “Crane Operator” was designated as a skill shortage in the province of Newfoundland and Labrador.

Site preparation and buildings were completed in August of 1992 and the first tower crane course began in October 1992 at the Holyrood training facility and continued until 1994.  The College produced forty-eight (48) tower crane operators for the Hibernia project who subsequently went to work on major projects throughout Canada.  These courses were made possible in partnership with strong support from principal contractors, like NODECO and PASSB, to provide professional training and safety in a workplace of five thousand workers.

In the interest of responding to other heavy equipment industry needs, the OEC secured future apprenticeship and enhancement training funds for heavy equipment operators through the Industrial Training Division of the Department of Advanced Education and Skills. With the present structure of the economy, industrial workers can no longer afford to be disadvantaged in regards to employment because they do not have the necessary skills.

Mission Statement

To provide a well trained, highly skilled, and productive workplace to the construction industry, who operate in a safe and efficient manner.



Our Mandate

The mandate of this College is to ensure that opportunity exists for operators to upgrade and enhance their skills.  Multi-skills training has already been undertaken and has worked successfully within the membership of IUOE (Local 904) and with other clients in the Atlantic Region.

We currently have a fully trained and certified staff backed by an efficient administrative system.  The school continues to produce an ongoing supply of apprentices from year-to-year.  The results of our efforts testify to the quality of the training we do.  Our safety record is second-to-none.  We have proven that operators, given the necessary training, do have the ability to adapt themselves to the rigid qualification demands in the construction industry today.

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