Tbnewswatch Local News
Monday July 6 2015
6:09 PM EDT
2014-01-22 at 17:03

College gets $750K boost for pre-apprenticeship programs

Hydro One president and CEO Carmine Marcello announces funding Wednesday afternoon.
Leith Dunick, tbnewswatch.com
Hydro One president and CEO Carmine Marcello announces funding Wednesday afternoon.
By Jamie Smith, tbnewswatch.com

As a college, Confederation can only do so much to get people into the trades and address a skills shortage in the region.

President Jim Madder said if he could he would double the number of tradespeople the college puts out.

And while that would help the college with enrollment, it would also mean more opportunity for young people to get high-skilled, high-paying jobs.

What's really needed is the industries help to convince people to enter the trades. Confederation College got some help Wednesday when it announced $750,000 in funding to boost its pre-apprenticeship program across Northwestern Ontario by about 100 students.

The money will also go towards more equipment, scholarships and job placements.

Madder said the program offers a chance for students to learn about five trades all while boosting numeracy and literacy skills.

"And at the same time attaching it to a trade," he said.

Hydro One president and CEO Carmine Marcello said the company's College Consortium has been working for nearly a decade to get people into the trades. As the workforce retires, Hydro One hasn't been exempt from finding new workers to replace it.

With development happening in First Nations communities throughout the North, Hydro One is also looking to get youth there trained and employed.

"Creating those opportunities is of critical importance to us," he said.

With more than $1 billion in energy projects heading to the region, MPP Bill Mauro (Lib., Thunder Bay-Atikokan) said Tuesday's announcement is good planning. Having students industry-ready when the work comes, all trained in Northwestern Ontario, is a good way to address the region's skills gap.

"We're going to have people ready and they're going to be local by and large," he said.


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The Badger Mountain Hermit says:
Hydro One is now in the educational funding business???
1/24/2014 8:51:47 AM
trevor99 says:
does anyone really understand how we ended up with a hydro debt. Because for years if not decades Ontario did not pay the true cost of producing that power and the debt kept growing. Now we can complain till the cows come home about the debt increasing in Ontario but at least this portion being paid off. As for power costs most people that follow this know that the overwhelming majority of the cost increase that has come, has been as a result of the massive dollars invested in upgrading the transmission of power. Fact not hyperbole.

I know about the gas plants. I hate the waste there too.
i know about the wind mills and I hate that also but that power has been a tiny portion of any increase.

If we don't pay the going rate the debt will just climb and if we don't upgrade we are delaying the pain

They have certainly not done everything perfect this government, but we need a bit more accuracy in the commentary that follows this topic.
1/23/2014 3:55:40 PM
pc says:
could you explain why we are paying to sell cheap electricity to the states and Quebec?
Here is one article on the subject.
1/24/2014 5:07:47 AM
rockhill says:
I would like to see the people that are doing their apprenticeships here to be able to do their schooling here too instead of going to Sault Ste Marie or Toronto. Why can't this be done if they want to encourage trades here. We already have the pre apprenticeship program anyway.
1/23/2014 11:05:18 AM
workingman says:
Most skilled trade apprenticeships can be taken locally.
1/23/2014 1:17:50 PM
workingman says:
Pre Apprenticeship programs are designed to provide basic and trade specific skills to persons looking for work in the skilled trades. Some of the skills aquired during training may be things like fall arrest,confined space entry,tool safety and usage,blueprint reading etc.Work shortages locally may be very short-lived and programs like these look to provide for future skilled position shortages. Unions as well as employers are not usually looking for people with zero training,knowledge or experience in the field to which they are hoping to gain employment.Having a solid amount of training backing their employment application will give the potential future trades person prospect the advantage over the uneducated applicant.
1/23/2014 10:50:58 AM
brooky says:
None of that matters in local union trades. One simply has to apply to the local unions to write the apptitude test and depending on how you do, you will be placed on a list for employment. Don't waste your time with college training. It won't help you pass the apptitude test, which is all that matters. This opinion is coming from 37 years of experience.
1/23/2014 11:36:28 PM
DougMyers says:
Actually the problem is the inability of people to pass the basic entrance exam to get on as an apprentice. I know many trades businesses that would love to hire an apprentice or two but cannot due to the lack of available candidates.

A pre-apprentice program would help prepare people to get the job that leads to an appreticeship.

For instance, the ability to spell the word college and knowing the difference between there, their and they're and being able to use them properly.
1/23/2014 10:39:41 AM
Formula One says:
I am so outraged by Hydro One. They are a crown corporation NOT a private corporation. I struggle to manage my electricity consumption beacuse it has become so expensive and Hydro One has the gall to hand over 750K when we already have government programs in place!! I am now paying twice?? Once through taxation and again through sky high hydro rates!! This is so wrong.
1/23/2014 10:05:16 AM
pc says:
I totally agree. I know 750 million would be a drop in the bucket towards paying down the debt, but it would be our drop. Pay down the debt bring down the rates and then pay for other things that have nothing to do with hydro.
1/23/2014 1:07:10 PM
workingman says:
That is $750,000 thousand,not million and it has everything to do with Hydro as they are employers of skilled trades people and wish to help create a pool of qualified potential employees.
1/23/2014 2:39:17 PM
pc says:
750 thousand. sorry that was a typo. Should not type when angry.
thanks working man for pointing that out.
1/24/2014 5:01:13 AM
S Duncan says:
That's the equivalent of the tail wagging the dog.

We end up in messy situations because we let schools and government try to dictate the needs of the public.

The public is supposed to drive government and schools are supposed to cater to the public.

Throwing money at things to socially engineer the public will be a long term loser 100% of the time.
1/23/2014 8:54:45 AM
Tbaylifer 1 says:
Another Liberal plan to buy votes.
1/23/2014 5:05:25 AM
tbay99 says:
From experience I can tell you a big problem is people/companies unwillingness to take on apprentices, not the number of people interested in doing it.
1/22/2014 8:24:01 PM
unknowncronik says:
I believe there is a certain percentage in most unions that must have 2 apprentices to every 5 journeymen, or something close to that...Pretty sure its law actually.
1/23/2014 10:11:36 AM
nvjgu says:
Pre apprenticeship, what Is that. Just go get an apprenticeship. Go to any union office and ask, or go to any other company to see if there looking for an apprentice. Oh and Hydro One go check it out, There not hiring. Nobody Is. Company I work for may have to lay off Six. There's no work. The collage will tell you anything to boost there bottom line. I'm a skilled trades person and there is no shortage believe me.
1/22/2014 7:09:52 PM
canuckman55 says:
there are almost no limits to how wrong you are in the above statement.
1/23/2014 2:35:25 PM
aurora01 says:
I worked with numerous Unions.. most of who did not like to grab students from the College's Pre-Apprenticeship program because of the type of training they were receiving. Why do a Pre-Apprenticeship with the college when you can go straight to the Union and have their training done? Try going to the Electrical Union and tell them you did the training with the college.. they will laugh at you. Where this money should have went was to the Unions to provide extra training for these interested Apprentices.
1/23/2014 7:42:46 PM
hadenough says:
With spelling and grammar like yours there's no doubt in anyone's mind why you couldn't land an apprenticeship for any trade. You need at least a high school education to even apply.
1/23/2014 5:13:44 PM
Eastender says:
Trade unions should not be the gateway to the availability of skilled trades workers. As we all know, part of the purpose of trade unions is to keep wages high by keeping the supply of skilled tradesmen below demand.

1/24/2014 3:51:48 PM
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