$1.3 million investment helps youth apprentices across B.C. to earn while they learn

VANCOUVER, British Columbia, Nov. 05, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- From November 4 to 10, 2018, we’re taking our hats off to B.C.’s apprentices for the fourth annual Apprenticeship Recognition Week. This week marks an opportunity to acknowledge the valued contributions of apprentices across the province in building and maintaining our thriving communities. To celebrate the importance of B.C.’s apprentices, the Industry Training Authority (ITA) is announcing that it’s funding more than $1.3 million in 2018/19 to 49 school districts in B.C. as part of the ITA Youth Work in Trades Programs. This is an increase of more than $100,000 from the previous year’s funding. Each of the 49 school districts will be receiving between $20,000 and $40,000 to support youth apprentices in their communities.

ITA Youth Work in Trades is a dual credit program that provides an opportunity for B.C. students in grades 10, 11 and 12 to begin their apprenticeship journey by working with local employers to gain practical hands-on experience. Students earn a paycheck while earning hours towards an apprenticeship and credits towards their high school diploma. An apprenticeship in the skilled trades is an integral entry-point for British Columbians to gain meaningful and good-paying careers. In fact, the most important aspect of an apprenticeship is on-the-job experience, which accounts for approximately 80 per cent of training (20 per cent in the classroom).

“Connecting high school students with the training they need to become skilled tradespeople gives them a real head start towards a rewarding, great career,” said Melanie Mark, Minister of Advanced Education, Skills and Training. “I’m proud our government is working with the ITA to lift people up. Everyone deserves to be a valued part of B.C.’s strong economy and help us meet employers’ needs for over 70,000 skilled trades workers in the next decade.”

“When students can get real work experience while still attending school, they have a head start on developing their career path,” said Rob Fleming, Minister of Education. “We want our students interested in skilled trades to be as prepared as possible to move forward in education, in work, and in life – and ITA Youth Trades Programs are a great way to give our students the best chance to succeed in all three.”

“This is a great time to be a part of B.C.’s skilled trades. The opportunity to earn while you learn in the Youth Work in Trades program helps students to kickstart their apprenticeship,” says Shelley Gray, interim Chief Executive Officer, Industry Training Authority. “From building roads up North to creating culinary masterpieces in the Lower Mainland to ship maintenance on the coast of B.C. – and everywhere in between – there are more than 100 rewarding trades careers to choose from. For many students, this program opens doors to a trade that they see a bright future in.”

“Gaining on-the-job experience while still in high school helped me to build a meaningful career for myself,” says Phil Gutmann, Red Seal Automotive Collision Repair Technician and a former ITA Youth Work in Trades program student. “The Youth Work in Trades program gave me the skills I needed to succeed. I’m proud to say that I’ve received my Red Seal certification and couldn’t be happier with my choice!”

ITA partners with the Ministry of Education to deliver ITA Youth Trades Programs that provide B.C. students with the opportunity to Discover, Explore, Train and Work in the trades during their school years. The programs provide students with a cohesive and streamlined path from early learning straight through to apprenticeship, and into the workforce.

  1. Discover the Trades provides hands-on opportunities for students to try a trade, learn about trades and build projects using design thinking as early as grade 5.
  2. Explore the Trades gives students a chance to explore different trades in grades 10-12. Students gain practical skills and complete work certifications that trades employers are looking for.
  3. Train in Trades is a dual credit program for grades 11-12 that allows students to earn credits towards high school graduation and the first level of technical training towards a trades certificate.
  4. Work in Trades is a dual credit program for grades 10-12 that allows students to earn credits towards high school graduation and begin the paid work-based training component of an apprenticeship.

About the Industry Training Authority
The Industry Training Authority (ITA) leads and coordinates British Columbia’s skilled trades system. ITA works with apprentices, employers, industry, labour, training providers and government to fund training, issue credentials, support apprenticeships, set program standards and increase opportunities in the trades. www.itabc.ca

Backgrounder
For the ITA Youth Work in Trades Programs, ITA is investing $1,330,000 in 2018/19 in the following 49 school districts:

    
Abbotsford  $40,000
Alberni  $20,000
Bulkley Valley  $20,000
Burnaby  $40,000
Campbell River  $20,000
Cariboo-Chilcotin  $20,000
Central Okanagan  $20,000
Chilliwack  $30,000
Coast Mountain  $20,000
Comox Valley  $30,000
Coquitlam  $40,000
Cowichan Valley  $30,000
Delta  $40,000
Fort Nelson  $20,000
Fraser-Cascade  $20,000
Greater Victoria  $40,000
Gulf Islands  $20,000
Independent Schools  $40,000
Kamloops/Thompson  $30,000
Kootenay Lake  $20,000
Kootenay-Columbia  $20,000
Langley  $40,000
Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows  $40,000
Mission  $30,000
N. Okanagan-Shuswap  $30,000
Nanaimo Ladysmith  $30,000
New Westminster  $30,000
Nicola Similkameen  $20,000
North Vancouver  $20,000
Okanagan Skaha  $20,000
Okanagan Similkameen  $20,000
Peace River North  $30,000
Peace River South  $20,000
Powell River  $20,000
Prince George  $30,000
Prince Rupert   $20,000
Qualicum  $20,000
Quesnel  $20,000
Revelstoke  $20,000
Richmond  $40,000
Saanich  $30,000
Sea to Sky  $20,000
Sooke  $30,000
Sunshine Coast  $20,000
Surrey  $40,000
Vancouver Island North  $20,000
Vancouver  $40,000
Vernon  $20,000
West Vancouver  $30,000
For interviews or more information, please contact:

Susan Kirk
Director of Communications, ITA
Tel: 778.785.2410
Cell: 604.315.9959
Email: 

Danielle Bronson
Edelman Vancouver
Tel: 604.648.3438
Cell: 604.616.4425
Email: