Engineers Canada and the Assembly of First Nations Working Together to Raise
Awareness Among First Nations Youth of Careers in Engineering

WINNIPEG, July 22 /CNW Telbec/ - Today, Engineers Canada and the Assembly of First Nations signed a partnership to increase awareness of, and access to, careers in engineering for First Nations youth.

The Assembly of First Nations is the national organization representing First Nations citizens in Canada. It recently issued a call to action on First Nations education to all Canadians and all sectors of Canadian society, a call answered by Canada's professional engineers.

"Engineers Canada believes that, as professional engineers, First Nations youth will enrich the quality of engineering and geosciences services and provide fresh perspectives on the resolution of engineering problems, not only within their own communities, but across Canada and around the world," said Zaki Ghavitian, FIC, ing., president of Engineers Canada.

"I thank Engineers Canada for this partnership in fostering better education opportunities for First Nations youth and, in doing so, helping to build a stronger Canada. Our population is young and booming and they are seeking opportunities for employment and to participate in the economic life of this country. This partnership will give them a chance to explore careers in engineering. We hope that other organizations will choose to get involved with First Nations just as the engineers of Canada did," stated Assembly of First Nations National Chief Shawn A-in-chut Atleo.

According to Human Resources and Skills Development Canada, Aboriginal youth between the ages of 15 and 30 are the fastest growing population segment in Canada. They play a very important role in filling jobs left vacant when older workers retire.

The partnership between the two organizations calls on the development of educational material and new initiatives to increase the awareness among young people of indigenous origin of career possibilities in the engineering sector and of available existing or future training programs.

This new initiative by the engineering community supports recent partnerships between the Government of Canada and Aboriginal communities in providing the resources necessary for Aboriginal youth to succeed in the job market so they can build better futures for themselves and their families. It is an example of how partnerships can help lay the foundation for better outcomes for indigenous Canadians.

"Together, Engineers Canada and the Assembly of First Nations will explore and pursue collaborations with other agencies to enhance the opportunities for First Nations' young people to pursue the education necessary for entry to the engineering profession", added Chantal Guay, ing., P.Eng., M. Env., chief executive officer of Engineers Canada.

Engineers Canada is the business name of the Canadian Council of Professional Engineers and is the national organization of the 12 provincial and territorial associations that regulate the practice of engineering in Canada and license the country's more than 234,000 members of the engineering profession.

The Assembly of First Nations is the national organization representing First Nations citizens in Canada.

SOURCE Assembly of First Nations

For further information: For further information: William Meyer, Manager, Communications, (613) 232-2474, ext. 249, will.meyer@engineerscanada.ca; Alain Garon, Bilingual Communications Officer, Assembly of First Nations, Cell: 613-292-0857, or agaron@afn.ca


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