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CALGARY, – Sept. 1 – Prime Minister Stephen Harper joins First Nations Treaty 7 Grand Chief Charles Weaselhead, Alberta Premier Ed Stelmach, Calgary Mayor Dave Bronconnier, WorldSkills International Chairman Tjerk (Jack) Dusseldorp, and WorldSkills Calgary 2009 Chairman Guy Mallabone for the Opening Ceremony of WorldSkills Calgary 2009.”To host the 40th WorldSkills Competition is a tremendous honour for Canada,” said Prime Minister Harper. “This marks the second time the event has been held in Canada and only the third time in North America in its 59-year history. The Government of Canada is proud to support WorldSkills Calgary 2009, as part of our efforts to encourage young Canadians to consider rewarding careers in the skills, trades and technologies sectors, where we have a great need for talented people.” The Opening Ceremony will be held at the Stampede Grandstand on September 1 from 6:00 to 9:00 p.m. and will also feature entertainment and a parade of nations as 900 international Competitors are officially welcomed. The ceremonies will also pump up Competitors and their supporters, offering a glimpse of the exciting week ahead. The ceremonies will end with a fireworks display.
“We are delighted that Grand Chief Weaselhead, Prime Minister Harper, Premier Stelmach, and Mayor Bronconnier are all able to join us for the Opening Ceremony,” says Richard Walker. “Their participation exemplifies the importance of the skills movement and of this Competition. This event could not happen without the generous support of the Government of Alberta, the Government of Canada and the City of Calgary. We are confident that the return on that investment will come over the next several years, as young Canadians are inspired to pursue career paths that they learn about over the next six days. Grand Chief Weaselhead’s participation marks the first time an Aboriginal leader has officially welcomed WorldSkills Competitors.” Funding from the Government of Alberta will enable 50,000 Grade 9 and 10 students from all over the province to attend WorldSkills Calgary 2009. Free admission to Stampede Park will encourage thousands more to take in the Competition.
WorldSkills Calgary 2009
WorldSkills Calgary 2009 marks the second time Canada hosts this international event in its 59-year history. In May 2004, at the WorldSkills General Assembly in Hong Kong, Calgary officially won the right to host the WorldSkills Competition. The successful bid was made possible through collaboration with WorldSkills International’s Canadian Member organization Skills/Compétences Canada and industry, educational institutions, government and the City of Calgary. WorldSkills Calgary 2009, a not-for-profit corporation is responsible for the planning, execution and legacy for the 40th WorldSkills Competition.
For the past five years, WorldSkills Calgary 2009 has been working closely with legacy, government, and industry partners to make the 40th WorldSkills Competition the most successful to date. Although the event is held from September 1 – 7, 2009, WorldSkills Calgary 2009 has been working with legacy partners to support the global skills movement that addresses labour shortage, competency standards, and education programs designed to motivate and encourage young adults to explore successful career options in skills, trades and technologies.
WorldSkills International’s (WSI) mission is to promote, through the cooperative action of 51 Members countries/regions, a worldwide awareness of the essential contribution that skills and high standards of competence make to the achievement of economic success and personal fulfillment. WSI provides a unique means of exchange and comparison of world-class competency standards in the industrial trades, information technologies and service sectors of the global economy. WSI works at all levels from grassroots to senior policy makers to affect change in training procedures, policy development and international standards. Through advocacy, education and Competitions, WorldSkills International is raising the level of competences throughout the world and bringing new awareness to these crucial sectors in the global economy. Without skills there is no economy. worldskills.org
Skills/Compétences Canada (S/CC) was founded in 1989 as a national, not-for-profit organization to actively promote careers in skilled trades and technologies to Canadian youth. S/CC works with private and public sector partners to help secure Canada’s future skilled labour needs while helping Canadian youth discover rewarding careers. S/CC offers experiential learning opportunities for hundreds of thousands of young Canadians including skills, trades, and technologies competitions through regional, provincial/territorial, national and international events, as well as skills,
trades, and technologies awareness programs. Headquartered in Canada’s National Capital Region Skills/Compétences Canada is the Canadian Member organization of WorldSkills International and in partnership with other stakeholders created the 40th WorldSkills Competition event organizing committee WorldSkills Calgary 2009. skillscanada.com
For further information: Laurie Stretch, NATIONAL Public Relations, (403) 617-4798, lstretch[at]national.ca; Karissa Boley, NATIONAL Public Relations, (403) 988-2888, kboley[at}national.ca
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