Up to 60 British Columbians in Vernon and surrounding areas are receiving the training they need for jobs in their communities, thanks to the federal-provincial partnership under the Canada-B.C. Job Fund Agreement.
Approximately $416,000 has been allocated to Okanagan College to deliver the Fast Track to Office Training Program.
Today, MLA for Vernon-Monashee Eric Foster and Okanagan College representatives visited students and instructors in the classroom, and heard about the training that is being delivered in Vernon, Revelstoke, Salmon Arm, Chase and Penticton.
The training program will prepare participants for jobs in office administration or entry-level bookkeeping, with certifications in introduction to office administration and basic accounting upon successful completion. To deliver the training, Okanagan College has partnered with local employers and the Neskonlith Indian Band in Chase and Salmon Arm, who have provided space and support for participants. There are five intakes for this program. Four intakes started in fall 2016 and are underway, while the last intake will start in January. All training will be completed by June 2017.
This training is part of an investment of more than $12 million for 49 training projects benefiting approximately 2,000 British Columbians throughout the province, thanks to funding provided through the Canada-B.C. Job Fund Agreement under the Employer-Sponsored Training stream.
The skills training projects support B.C.’s regional labour-market demands and provide opportunities to youth, women, Aboriginal people, immigrants and other eligible participants to receive training, as well as industry-recognized certificates or credentials.
Through the Canada Job Fund, the Government of Canada provides $500 million annually to the provinces and territories for investments in skills training. Under the Canada-British Columbia Job Fund Agreement, the province receives a total of $65 million per year—its per-capita share of the available funding.
The Canada-B.C. Job Fund helps ensure training programs give individuals the skills to enter and succeed in the job market. The Employer-Sponsored Training stream provides funding for project-based, time-limited, employer-driven training that leads to a job at the end of training. This includes targeted projects delivered by Aboriginal service providers, post-secondary institutions, industry associations, community groups, and private trainers that meet regional labour market needs. Employers also provide either financial or in-kind contributions to support the training.
Eric Foster, MLA for Vernon-Monashee –
“Office administration personnel and bookkeepers are in demand in our region. The Fast Track to Office Training Program, delivered by Okanagan College with support from the Province, is excellent news for our local employers, as well as job seekers.
“It was great to visit the students and instructors in the program today. I wish all the students the best of luck in their future careers. Thank you to Okanagan College, the Neskonlith Indian Band and our local employers for supporting our students.”
Jane Lister, regional dean, North Okanagan, Okanagan College –
“The support we have received through this federal-provincial partnership has allowed greater access for students in our region to acquire the skills they need to help meet the labour market demands. The result is a more highly skilled workforce that is well prepared to contribute to our local community.”
Tammy Thomas, director of education, Neskonlith Indian Band –
“Delivering this program to students in our communities has been incredibly valuable and is exactly the kind of partnership we have been pursuing. The commitment from Okanagan College and the support from the government has made all the difference in the students’ success. We have been able to provide a high level of support services, which has drastically increased access to the program.”
- B.C. is expecting almost one million job openings by 2025.
- Up to 134,700 job openings are expected in B.C.’s Thompson-Okanagan and Kootenay regions by 2025.
- Two-thirds of B.C.’s job openings will be from retirements and one-third from economic growth.
- Almost 80% of job openings in B.C. will require post-secondary education.
- The B.C. government invests more than $7.8 billion each year in education and training.
- Through B.C.’s Skills for Jobs Blueprint, $3 billion in training investments will be redirected to in-demand jobs over the next 10 years.
Okanagan College: http://www.okanagan.bc.ca/
Canada Job Fund: http://www.esdc.gc.ca/eng/jobs/training_agreements/cjf/index.shtml
British Columbia’s Skills for Jobs Blueprint: https://www.workbc.ca/skills
B.C. Labour Market Outlook 2025: https://www.workbc.ca/Labour-Market-Information/B-C-s-Economy/Reports.aspx