Victoria, British Columbia — British Columbia is trying to fill some seats in its trade school classrooms as the provincial government announced a $5 million investment to support the Industry Training Authority (ITA) and its efforts to promote automotive skilled trades education.
Alongside the investment will come the hiring of five new apprenticeship advisors (one in Kelowna North, one in Southern Interior and three in the Lower Mainland), bringing the total number of advisors in B.C. to 25.
“We are excited about the opportunities offered through skilled trades certification and our expanded team of apprentice advisors is ready to give on-the-ground support to apprentices and employer sponsors and remove any barriers that may arise throughout the apprenticeship journey,” said Pam Eales, manager of the ITA’s apprenticeship advisors.
According to Friday’s press release, this financial boost, as well as the new hires, will allow the ITA to be able to better connect with business owners, new apprentices and experienced tradespeople who are looking to upgrade their skills.
Current government estimates put the number of apprenticeship and foundation training seats funded by the ITA at about 27,000 through 15 public post-secondary institutions, as well as several non-public post-secondary institutions.
“The trades training system in British Columbia supports trades workers to get the hands-on experiences they need to strengthen their careers,” said Minister of Advanced Education and Skills Training Anne Kang.
“Approximately 85,000 additional job openings are expected in the trades in B.C. by 2031. We are committed to ensuring that people starting a career in the trades or looking to certify have the support they need to continue to get the well-paying job of their dreams as they contribute to a stronger B.C.”