$1.4M Supports Aboriginal and Youth Apprentices

by NationTalk on April 9, 2008799 Views

For Immediate Release
April 8, 2008

Ministry of Economic Development
Industry Training Authority

VICTORIA – The Industry Training Authority (ITA) has awarded $1.4 million to help increase Aboriginal and youth participation in industry training and apprenticeship programs, announced Economic Development Minister Colin Hansen and ITA CEO Kevin Evans.“This investment will make it easier for students to pursue their chosen career path in the trades,” said Hansen. “By providing this financial support to encourage Aboriginal people and other youths to enter and complete industry training and apprenticeship programs, we are helping to meet B.C.’s need for skilled workers, both today and in the future.”

The funding will be shared between two not-for-profit organizations. The Career Education Society (CES) receives $1.1 million to help boost participation among grades 10-12 students in the Secondary School Apprenticeship (SSA) program. School districts will be eligible to receive funding of between $15,000 and $40,000 to encourage more students to continue their apprenticeship training after high school and become certified in their chosen fields.

Skills Canada BC receives $300,000 to provide bursaries of up to $5,000 each to Aboriginal students who wish to attend a recognized pre-apprenticeship, foundation industry training program.

“We’re excited about the potential for these programs proposed by the CES and Skills Canada BC as they will contribute measurably to our efforts to build the supply of skilled workers available to B.C. employers,” said Evans. “They will reduce barriers to education and career success for two groups of British Columbians that are currently under-employed, even in today’s strong economy.”

Established in 2004 to oversee and expand B.C.’s industry training and apprenticeship system, the Industry Training Authority works with industry and employers, trainees and apprentices, labour unions and training providers to meet industry’s current and future training needs. The grants announced today align with the ITA’s goals to increase the participation of under-represented labour groups, including youth and Aboriginal people, in industry training programs.

More information is available online through the ITA website at www.itabc.ca.



Rena Kendall-Craden
Communications Director
Ministry of Economic Development
250 952-0152

Lisa Dooling
Director of Communications & Marketing
Industry Training Authority
604 671-8710

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