Premier Christy Clark today unveiled a six-month progress update on B.C.’s Skills for Jobs Blueprint at the State of the Island Economic Summit in Nanaimo. The update summarizes a wide range of actions undertaken across government since the launch of the Blueprint on April 29th of this year that are helping to put British Columbians first in line for in-demand jobs throughout the province.
“B.C.’s growing economy needs workers with the right skills to meet industry needs, in LNG and other high-demand sectors,” said Premier Christy Clark. “This Blueprint update shows solid progress on meeting this challenge - building a strong training foundation for BC workers to take advantage of new jobs.”
The six-month progress update delivers on government’s commitment to track and report on Blueprint outcomes resulting from re-engineering B.C.’s education and skills training system - from kindergarten straight through to post-secondary training and beyond. The full update is available at: www.workbc.ca/blueprintaction
Since the Blueprint was launched, students now have the opportunity to explore a variety of trades while they earn credit towards graduation through Skills Exploration 10-12. In consultation with a panel of stakeholders, the Industry Training Authority is working on redesigning its youth programs to support the B.C.'s Skills for Jobs Blueprint objective to increase youth participation in continuing into apprenticeship and skilled trades careers.
“We are very excited with the progress that’s been made so far and I know school districts and our partners across the sector share in our enthusiasm,” said Peter Fassbender Minister of Education. “Providing our students a head-start to hands-on learning not only helps keep them engaged on their educational journey, but gives them the knowledge and experience to succeed in the workforce or on the path to higher education.”
Construction is also underway on two new multi-million trades training facilities on Vancouver Island and in the Okanagan. Additionally, in the first six months of launching the Blueprint, government has funded 1,424 critical trades training seats, launched the BC Access Grant program and provided education and training programs for hundreds of Aboriginal learners in their community.
“As promised, we are aligning education and training to in-demand jobs,” said Amrik Virk, Minister of Advanced Education. “Colleges, universities and institutes are making significant changes to their programming to meet the needs of students, employers and industry.”
The six-month Blueprint update also highlights significant progress on building stronger partnerships with industry and labour to deliver training and apprenticeships, including the addition of ITA Sector Advisory Groups, Industry Relations Managers and 10 new Apprentice Advisors across the province. In addition, new resources like Find Your Fit and updated WorkBC.ca tools are getting more British Columbians, particularly youth, interested and aware of in-demand occupations like the skilled trades.
“These last six months have shown that our Skills for Jobs Blueprint is changing the way we think about, and fund, skills training,” said Shirley Bond, Minister of Jobs, Tourism and Skills Training and Minister Responsible for Labour. “Our greatest competitive advantage is a highly skilled workforce, and through the Blueprint I’m confident that we can meet the labour demands of our growing economy - now and in the years ahead.”
By 2022, there will be one million job openings in B.C. - more than 78% of jobs will require some form of post-secondary education, and 43% in trades and technical occupations. In response, the B.C. government launched B.C.’s Skills for Jobs Blueprint to provide a detailed action plan that gives young people a clear and seamless path right from school through to the workplace.
By shifting resources to a data-driven system where training dollars and programs are targeted to jobs in demand, the Blueprint is ensuring that B.C. has the skilled workers needed to fill in-demand jobs now and over the next decade.
To learn more about the Skills for Jobs Blueprint six-month update, visit: www.workbc.ca/blueprintaction
To learn more about the B.C.’s Skills for Jobs Blueprint, visit: www.workbc.ca/skills
Ministry of Jobs, Tourism and Skills Training and Responsible for Labour
Office of the Premier