College students in Nunavik, Que. must travel long distances to get their education, but that could soon change.

The provincial education ministry is considering establishing a CEGEP in the northern region, where there are currently no post-secondary institutions.

The need for a CEGEP in Nunavik is glaring. As it stands, prospective students must travel long distances south via airplane in order to attend schools above the secondary level.

The government will conduct a feasibility study before breaking any ground, to be completed by March 2023.

Through “collaboration with the Inuit community,” the goal of the study is to “obtain recommendations on the following elements: model and structure, potential location(s), complementary services, main phases and conditions favoring access to higher education,” reads a statement from the education ministry.

Around 12,000 people live in Nunavik and nearly 90 per cent of them are Inuit. According to the 2016 census, the region accounts for about 18 per cent of Canada’s Inuit population.

The project is part of Quebec’s Northern Action Plan, which aims to better living conditions for northern communities and address issues like food scarcity and roads in need of major upgrades.

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