To recognize the invaluable contribution of apprentices and their employers to the province’s economy and labour force, the British Columbia government has officially proclaimed Nov. 2-6, 2015, as Apprenticeship Recognition Week in B.C.
Today, B.C. apprentices, their employers and program instructors were in the spotlight at the Parliament Buildings in Victoria, as representatives from the B.C. government and the Industry Training Authority celebrated the official launch of Apprenticeship Recognition Week.
Apprenticeship programs are one of the best ways for British Columbians to gain the skills and training they need to succeed in their chosen career. It is estimated 80% of training takes place on the work site and 20% takes place in the class.
The B.C. government and the ITA have been working closely with industry stakeholders across all sectors to expand apprenticeship opportunities, which is a key goal of the B.C. Skills for Jobs Blueprint. To help achieve this goal, the government introduced the Apprentices on Public Projects policy last July which requires all contractors that work on major public construction projects, with provincial investments over $15 million, to demonstrate that they are engaged in apprenticeship training.
In recognition of the important support by employers to their apprentices throughout the region, the ITA has been holding a series of regional events to honour local employers that hire Secondary School Apprenticeship (SSA) students. As part of Apprenticeship Recognition Week celebrations,the ITA will visit employers and their apprentices in Nanaimo, Burnaby and Prince George this week.
Shirley Bond, Minister of Jobs, Tourism and Skills Training and Minister Responsible for Labour –
“We are expecting a broad range of job openings throughout the province due to retirements and economic growth, and we want British Columbians to be the first in line for these job opportunities. To achieve this, we need to provide our future workforce with the training they need to be ready to enter the job market. Apprentices and their employers are an invaluable part of our province’s economy; they help fulfil our labour market demands and keep our economy strong and growing. Apprenticeship Recognition Week is an acknowledgement of their very important contribution to our province.”
Gary Herman, CEO, Industry Training Authority –
“Employers who hire apprentices are mentors as well as sponsors. It only takes one apprenticeship experience to change someone’s life and career pathway. 80% of trades training takes place outside of the classroom and employer sponsors are integral in growing the trades community in B.C. Demand for skilled tradespeople is increasing and there has never been a better time to be an employer sponsor or an apprentice. Successful apprenticeships and hands-on training will ensure that B.C.'s tradespeople have the right skills, at the right time and place.”
- This year marks the 80th anniversary of the Apprenticeship Act in B.C. The act came into effect in 1935 and brought apprenticeship under provincial government oversight.
- The B.C. government invests almost $7.5 billion each year in education and training.
- The B.C. government launched B.C.’s Skills for Jobs Blueprint to re-engineer its education and apprenticeship system so training dollars and programs are targeted to in-demand jobs.
- Over the next 10 years, the B.C. government will redirect $3 billion of its training investment to these in-demand jobs.
- The ITA provides more than 100 apprenticeship training programs in B.C., including almost 50 Red Seal trades.
- There are currently more than 38,000 registered apprentices in the industry training system (including youth), and more than 9,958 registered employer sponsors of apprentices in B.C.
- ITA awarded over 7,500 Certificates of Qualification (‘tickets’) to journeypersons in B.C. last year.
- Since 2004, the ITA has issued a total of over 66,000 Certificates of Qualification to journeypersons in B.C.
To find out more about B.C. government’s Apprentices on Public Projects policy, visit: https://news.gov.bc.ca/stories/public-project-contractors-required-to-sponsor-apprentices
To find out more about the Industry Training Authority, visit: http://www.itabc.ca/
To find out more about resources for job seekers and employers in B.C., visit: https://www.workbc.ca/