Andrew Wilkinson, Minister of Advanced Education has said that “With so much opportunity expected in the trades, now is a great time to be entering this in-demand field. Government continues to set students up for success by investing in additional training seats, infrastructure and equipment to help put them on course for a promising career.”

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Shirley Bond, Minister of Jobs, Tourism and Skills Training and Minister Responsible for Labour said that “Our investments through B.C.’s Skills for Jobs Blueprint are targeted at high-priority trades so we have a skilled workforce for our growing economy and the almost one million job openings anticipated in B.C. by 2025. We are mapping out a clear path to trades careers from early learning, to post-secondary training and apprenticeships leading into well-paying, family-supporting jobs.”

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The start of a new year marks a fresh beginning full of opportunity. If a new job is on your “to-do” list, consider a future in a rewarding career in the trades.

The British Columbia 2025 Labour Market Outlook ranks a career in trades, transportation and related occupations among the top opportunities in B.C., with approximately 123,000 job openings forecasted over the 10-year outlook period.

Training for a career in the trades is valuable. The 2015 Apprenticeships Student Outcomes Survey indicated that 98% of employed former traditional apprenticeship students are working full-time with a median hourly wage of $31.

Government continues to support in-demand occupations in the trades by aligning investments in education and training through B.C.’s Skills for Jobs Blueprint.

Employers throughout British Columbia are looking for skilled workers who have experience using modern equipment currently found on jobsites and in workplaces.

Government has provided more than $27 million to 20 public post-secondary institutions to purchase new industry-standard training equipment since the launch of the Blueprint. Trades-training equipment funding for 2016-17 includes $6.1 million at 15 institutions and supports students entering careers in the natural resource, industrial, marine, construction or hospitality sectors.

B.C.’s Skills for Jobs Blueprint is re-engineering education and apprenticeship systems to ensure British Columbians have the skills and training they need to take advantage of the diverse, strong and growing economy. Since the launch of the Blueprint, the Province has targeted $14.6 million to reduce wait lists in high-demand trades, creating 3,730 additional critical-trade seats at 14 public post-secondary institutions.

Students looking to learn more about what trades-training spaces are currently available can use the online trades training seat finder: www.tradestrainingbc.ca

The B.C. Access Grant for Labour Market Priorities provides non-repayable grant and loan reduction funding of up to $16,400 for students with financial need to study in-demand trades at eligible public post-secondary institutions. More than 1,850 students have received approximately $8.4 million since announcing the B.C. Access Grant in September 2014.