Colleges applaud government's major investment in apprenticeship training in Ontario

TORONTO, April 9, 2015 /CNW/ - Ontario's colleges applaud Premier Kathleen Wynne's announcement today of a major investment in apprenticeship programs to help greater numbers of people train for the skilled trades.

"This is a tremendous commitment to apprenticeship training in this province," said David Agnew, the president of Seneca College and chair of Colleges Ontario. "Producing a more highly skilled workforce will create a significant boost to the province's economy."

Premier Wynne announced $55 million in new funding today for apprenticeship – the Apprenticeship Enhancement Fund, the Pre-Apprenticeship Training Program and for the in-class portion of apprenticeship training, about 90 per cent of which is primarily delivered at colleges.

The funding will help ensure the sustainability of apprenticeship programs throughout the province. The announcement includes funding for new equipment and technology upgrades, as well as improvements for in-class education.

The announcement also includes funding that is specifically targeted at providing more training opportunities to people that are underrepresented in the trades, including at-risk youth, Aboriginal Peoples, newcomers and women. They will be able to participate for free in the pre-apprenticeship training program and will have access to free textbooks, tools and safety equipment.

"The government is clearly making apprenticeship training a priority in Ontario," said Linda Franklin, the president and CEO of Colleges Ontario. "We applaud the government's action in this area, as there is a significant demand for people with the qualifications and advanced skills to succeed in the trades."

SOURCE Colleges Ontario

For further information: Rob Savage, Director of Communications, Colleges Ontario, 647-258-7687, savage@collegesontario.org

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www.collegesontario.org

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