Province to review practicum programs following intern's death
Andy Ferguson died after all-night, unpaid shift
The province says it will review the student practicum programs of all 26 public post-secondary schools, in light of the death of Andy Ferguson, an Edmonton intern who died in a car crash after working 16 hours in one day.
One of Ferguson's internships was paid, the other, a requirement for graduation from his radio and television broadcast diploma at NAIT, was unpaid. That internship was with Astral Media’s local pop rock radio stations, ‘The Bear’ and ‘Virgin Radio.'
In interviews with CBC's Go Public investigative unit, Andy's brother Matt and girlfriend Caelie Crowley said he was taken advantage of, and that exhaustion likely caused Andy to fall asleep at the wheel.
Deputy Premier and Advanced Education Minister Thomas Lukaszuk told CBC News that tragedies like Ferguson's are rare.
"But important enough to give us a reason to review how we assure student safety on job sites and we'll do exactly that."
"There are lessons to be learned and we will certainly do a thorough review."
Matt Ferguson said he was relieved upon hearing the news, and believes the review will be a great tribute to his brother's memory.
"I feel ecstatic right now," Ferguson said.
"Everything that has been very hard and very trying and you know if something positive can make a difference, I'm thrilled."
Lukaszuk said he has not ruled out legislation to protect students.
With files from CBC's Mark Harvey