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Fanshawe College has officially opened its new space, Innovation Village.

This 95,000-square-foot facility at the heart of the College’s London Campus will focus on hands-on learning, creative problem solving and collaboration among students, employees and industry. 

In addition to philanthropic donations, financial support for the development of Innovation Village was provided by the Government of Canada, through the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario), the City of London and the Fanshawe Student Union (FSU).

“London has long been a center of innovation and our government is pleased to support London’s leaders in the food manufacturing and digital technologies sectors. The opening of the Innovation Village will enable Fanshawe College to provide exceptional learning opportunities using cutting-edge equipment. This investment will position Fanshawe graduates for success,” says the Honourable Filomena Tassi, Minister responsible for the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario.

“London’s food manufacturing and digital technology sectors have incredible potential. By collaborating with Fanshawe College through initiatives like the Innovation Village, we are allowing student entrepreneurs to get some great learning opportunities. This will prepare them to be resilient, adaptable workers so they can enter the innovation ecosystem here in London,” says Peter Fragiskatos, Member of Parliament for London North Centre.

“Congratulations to Fanshawe College on the grand opening of the impressive Innovation Village,” said Jill Dunlop, Minister of Colleges and Universities. “This modern, inclusive facility will provide students with real-world experience in collaboration with industry to better prepare them for rewarding careers in Ontario’s evolving labour market.”

“The grand opening of this state-of-the-art facility represents London’s commitment to innovation, education and collaboration. As we witness the coming together of students and industry in creative spaces, we celebrate a future where talent is nurtured, ideas flourish and our city thrives. I’m incredibly excited to see the greatness that is sure to come out of the Innovation Village,” says Josh Morgan, Mayor of London.

Construction on the facility began in 2020, and its opening marks an important milestone in Fanshawe’s commitment to innovation in education and collaboration with industry partners. The building was designed by Diamond Schmitt Architects and constructed by D. Grant Construction Limited. Features include a focus on sustainability, Indigenous-inspired design elements and spaces that encourage collaboration and experimentation with technology.

“Fanshawe is focused on unlocking the potential of students from around the globe and preparing them for the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead in our city, the region, the province and beyond,” says Fanshawe College President Peter Devlin. “In Innovation Village, students will engage in the hands-on learning, creative exploration and complex problem-solving they need to be ready for a future that demands adaptability, creativity and a deep understanding of the dynamic landscape they are poised to enter.”

Some of the spaces in Innovation Village include:

  • The Diane Blake Centre of Excellence in XR, a lab focused on integrating extended reality (XR) in education, named in recognition of a $5 million donation from philanthropist Diane Blake;

  • The Canada Life Village Square, a presentation and event space named in recognition of a $250,000 donation from Canada Life;

  • The Library Learning Commons, which includes the Kalihwíy̲o̲ Circle, a focal point for Indigenous students and communities to engage in research, innovation, experiential and digital learning and social entrepreneurship;

  • Forwell Hall, a concert, events and conference space for the Fanshawe Student Union with additional student retail spaces.

Several Fanshawe departments will now operate out of Innovation Village, including The Library Learning CommonsLeap Junction entrepreneurship services, the Fanshawe Student Union and the Centre for Research and Innovation.

“The significance of Innovation Village extends beyond its physical boundaries,” says Simon Trevarthen, Fanshawe’s chief innovation and open assets officer. “It represents a commitment to equipping our students with the skills and mindset necessary to navigate and excel in a rapidly evolving world. They will not only learn about innovation but will actively participate in the innovation process, preparing them for the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead.”

Innovation Village is located at Fanshawe’s London Campus, 1001 Fanshawe College Blvd. More information can be found at

Ribbon cutting to officially open Innovation Village
The ribbon cutting to officially open Innovation Village took place on January 26, 2024.

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