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Government of Canada marks World Youth Skills Day with major investments in skills and innovation projects

·13 min read

Government of Canada marks World Youth Skills Day with major investments in skills and innovation projects

Government of Canada marks World Youth Skills Day with major investments in skills and innovation projects

Canada NewsWire

GATINEAU, QC, July 13, 2022

GATINEAU, QC, July 13, 2022 /CNW/ - Young people and students have a pivotal role to play in Canada's economic recovery and future growth. In the run-up to World Youth Skills Day on July 15, the Government of Canada is highlighting the importance of equipping young people with the skills they need and remains committed to helping them gain relevant experience for an evolving job market.

Today, Salma Zahid, Member of Parliament for Scarborough Centre, on behalf of Marci Ien, Minister for Women and Gender Equality and Youth, announced significant investments to help provide youth and post-secondary students with innovative skills training and learning opportunities over this summer and in upcoming years.

In the spirit of World Youth Skills Day and this year's theme, "Transforming Youth Skills for the Future," the Minister highlighted investments that are helping to provide innovative skills training and learning opportunities to tens of thousands of youth and students.

MP Zahid made the announcement at the CEE Centre for Young Black Professionals, where she highlighted $1.7 million in funding for their project called From Neet to EET 2.0. Funded through the Youth Employment and Skills Strategy program, this project will help Black youth join the workforce by offering skills training, job placements and career coaching with a focus on digital technology. More than 165 job placements for youth will be created through this program.

MP Zahid was also joined by representatives from Co-operative Education and Work-Integrated Learning Canada, a long-standing Innovative Work-Integrated Learning (I-WIL) Initiative organization that is paving the way by providing innovative work opportunities.

The investments highlighted today include:

  • Nearly $150 million through the Student Work Placement Program's I-WIL Initiative, which will help to create more than 55,000 valuable and relevant short-term, technology-assisted work experience opportunities for post-secondary students across Canada.

  • Over $11.6 million through the Youth Employment and Skills Strategy for innovative job training programs that will help support and serve up to 1,000 youth. These opportunities are allowing young people to gain experience and skills for in-demand jobs in the fields of virtual reality and information technology.

Today's announcement builds on the Government's ongoing actions to help young Canadians and students adapt to the demands of an evolving workforce and move forward from the impacts of the pandemic.

Quotes

"Skills development early on in a young person's life can go a long way. To build the foundation for a successful career, we need to actively ensure that young Canadians and students have the relevant skills and experience in areas that they are passionate about. The investments that we announced today leading up to World Youth Skills Day will help tens of thousands of young Canadians and students set their career goals, leading to lasting positive change for communities from coast to coast to coast."

Marci Ien, Minister for Women and Gender Equality and Youth

"To bolster Canada's economic recovery, we must ensure that the next generation of workers have access to the tools, opportunities and relevant skills they need to build successful careers. With investments such as these, the Government of Canada is demonstrating how it is helping young people and students across the country gain the relevant skills they need for the future."

Salma Zahid, Member of Parliament for Scarborough Centre

"CEE is creating a talent pool of young Black professionals that will positively impact the Canadian economy."

- Agapi Gessesse, Executive Director, CEE Centre for Young Black Professionals

"Since its creation, the iHub team has done a remarkable job. Beyond the services provided to nearly 15,000 students, we were struck by the countless inspiring stories that came our way about how these investments have broken down barriers and increased access to work-integrated learning opportunities for students. As a leader in work-integrated learning in Canada, CEWIL is honoured to pursue this important work and to expand and support work-integrated learning possibilities for students."

Charlene Marion, Director, Co-operative Education and Work-Integrated Learning (CEWIL) Canada

"The pandemic and the evolving labour market have continued to call upon us all to think outside the box in providing work-integrated learning in ways that students gain experience they need to be successful in employment, while fulfilling academic requirements for graduation. Inspiring innovation in work-integrated learning creates wider access to quality work-integrated learning and responds to changing needs of students, post-secondary institutions and industry. CEWIL is dedicated to advancing quality work-integrated learning, and this partnership ensures we can continue to build on this momentum and expand Canada's capacity for exceptional work-integrated learning."

– Dr. Matthew Rempel, President, Co-operative Education and Work-Integrated Learning (CEWIL) Canada

Quick Facts

  • On July 15, 2022, Canada will celebrate World Youth Skills Day, a day to acknowledge and celebrate the importance of equipping young people with skills for employment, decent work and entrepreneurship. This year's theme, "Transforming Youth Skills for the Future," was chosen to bring attention to the ways in which young people are able to quickly adapt to the demands of an ever-changing world.

  • Budget 2021 funded approximately 500,000 new job and training opportunities for workers over the coming years—including a historic investment of over $5.7 billion in the next five years to create 215,000 new opportunities for youth. Altogether, the Government of Canada's response to the pandemic represents one of the largest youth support packages in the world.

  • Youth (15 to 24) were hard hit by pandemic-related job losses, and their unemployment rate rose significantly, reaching a record high of 28.8% in May 2020. In June 2022, the youth employment rate (58.5%) was on par (+0.4 percentage points) with its pre-pandemic rate in February 2020, while the unemployment rate edged down to 9.2%, dipping below (-1.4 percentage points) the pre-pandemic rate and reaching a historical low since data was first collected in 1976. In June 2022, conditions continued to be favourable for students in the summer job market. Just over half (53.2%) of returning students aged 15 to 24 (those intending to return to school in September) were employed, higher than before the pandemic in June 2019 (51.2%).

  • The Government of Canada continues to lead on the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, which was adopted by the United Nations to help build stronger, safer and more inclusive communities that leave no one behind. This announcement supports Canada's commitment to inclusive and equitable quality education and lifelong learning opportunities for all, to help achieve Sustainable Development Goal 4: Quality Education. It also supports Canada's commitment to inclusive and sustainable economic growth as well as full and productive employment, which falls under Sustainable Development Goal 8: Decent Work and Economic Growth.

  • The Youth Employment and Skills Strategy also delivers the Government of Canada's Canada Summer Jobs (CSJ) program, which provides wage subsidies to employers to create employment opportunities for youth. The CEE Centre for Young Black Professionals successfully received funding through CSJ 2022 application period to create more than 15 quality CSJ placements in areas such as program administration, social media, community service and educational administrator.

Related Product

Backgrounder

Innovative Work-Integrated Learning (I-WIL) Initiative

Under the Student Work Placement Program, the Innovative Work-Integrated Learning (I-WIL) Initiative provides $150 million over four years (from Budget 2019) to establish partnerships with businesses to create more than 55,000 new innovative Work-Integrated Learning opportunities for post-secondary students, related to their studies.

These opportunities providenew and emerging types of experiential learning for students to apply their skills in a work-related context, focusing on short and intensive activities that use technology, such as micro-placements, hackathons, virtual internships, and business and community-based classroom projects.

The eight organizations that deliver I-WIL are:

Organization: Co-operative Education and Work-Integrated Learning (CEWIL)
Project title: CEWIL Innovation Hub
Description: Create, promote and evaluate new and emerging I-WIL experiences and best practices. Through the establishment of a new CEWIL Innovation Hub, these placements will support regional innovation with an emphasis on key labour market sectors that leverage technology.
Region: all Canadian provinces and territories
Funding amount: $52,934,788
Target number of placements: 26,155

Organization: Riipen Networks Inc.
Project title: Work Integrated Learning – Innovative Experiences and Student Training (WILIEST)
Description: Through the Riipen platform, deliver part-time paid remote/online I-WIL placements to underserved students across all academic disciplines in Canada.
Region: all Canadian provinces and territories
Funding amount: $48,885,000
Target number of placements: 24,443

Organization: Colleges and Institutes Canada
Project title: Expanding Access to WIL Virtual Simulation Opportunities for Health Care Students
Description:Create new and innovative virtual ways of providing the competencies necessary for students in nursing, medical laboratory sciences and paramedicine to continue to engage with and learn from employers despite the pandemic.
Region: all Canadian provinces and territories
Funding amount: 13,929,528
Target number of placements: 7,000

Organization: The Governors of the University of Calgary
Project title: I-WIL Ventures, Fostering Entrepreneurial Thinking for the 21st Century Economy
Description:Create I-WIL placements for students across Canada using an entrepreneurial lens so students can build transferrable in-demand skills. In collaboration with I-WIL Ventures innovation hub partners, students will benefit from a variety of experiential learning engagements in local innovation hubs.
Region: all Canadian provinces and territories
Funding amount: $12,450,000
Target number of placements: 6,295

Organization: Venture for Canada
Project title: Catalyzing Transferable Skills in Students through Project-Based Learning at Innovative SMEs
Description:This project will create new I-WIL opportunities that will allow post-secondary students to apply and develop skills in a real world setting while receiving feedback from employers. Students will develop transferable skills, enhance their employer networks, obtain career clarity and build confidence in their workplace skills that will help them integrate more rapidly into the workforce.
Region: all Canadian provinces and territories
Funding amount: $ 10,372,930
Target number of placements:5,297

Organization: Canadian Institute for Exponential Growth
Project title: Wavemakers
Description:Help post-secondary students gain experience and connections to employers using an immersive and engaging artificial reality platform. Students will test and scale a new WIL model designed to provide them with the skills they will need to transition successfully into the work, workplace and workforce of the future.
Region: all Canadian provinces and territories
Funding amount: $4,994,226
Target number of placements: 1,800

Organization: Canadian Mobility and Aerospace Institute
Project title: Creating 500 paid micro-internships in the mobility sector
Description: Through this project, businesses will be able to obtain funding for 500 new on-the-job learning activities in the form of micro-internships. The funding will also help businesses carry out more of their activity ideas that might not otherwise have been possible.
Region: all Canadian provinces and territories
Funding amount: $3,982,751
Target number of placements: 4,664

Organization: Actua
Project title: Actua's Future-Ready Work Integrated Learning Project
Description:Engage post-secondary students, including Indigenous and racialized youth, youth facing poverty, youth with disabilities and LGBTQ youth, in short-term paid work experience as an Actua instructor. These WIL experiences will include comprehensive skills training in a virtual and/or physical classroom setting to gain foundational, job-ready skills including communication, networking, collaboration, emotional intelligence and cultural competencies.
Region: all Canadian provinces and territories
Funding amount: $1,752,291
Target number of placements: 876

Youth Employment and Skills Strategy

The Youth Employment and Skills Strategy (YESS) is a Government of Canada initiative delivered in collaboration with 12 federal departments and agencies, including Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC). Through the YESS, the Government of Canada helps young people, particularly those facing barriers to employment, get the information and gain the skills, work experience and abilities they need to make a successful transition into the labour market. ESDC's YESS program supports organizations that provide job placements and skills development services to young people, as well as a broad range of supports such as job coaching, mental health support, clothes for job interviews, day care services for parents and subsidized Internet access to help with job searches.

The Government of Canada is investing up to $11.6 million through the Youth Employment and Skills Strategy toward innovative job training which will help serve up to 1000 youth. These opportunities are allowing young people to gain experience and skills for in-demand jobs in the fields of virtual reality and information technologies.

Organization: Urban Society for Aboriginal Youth
Project title: URBAN MAMMOTH: Indigenous Youth Employment Project
Description: With this funding, 400 youth aged 15 to 30 will be engaged to test and provide feedback on a toolkit that is being developed within this project. Throughout the first three phases of the project, the toolkit will be continually tested by at least 400 Indigenous youth between the ages of 15 to 30, who will provide feedback on game functionalities, content and ideas for improvement. Another 15 Indigenous youth will participate in testing during the implementation phase. Apart from their role as testers, these youth will not be offered employment interventions or services during the project life cycle. However, they will be offered honorariums for the short time they spend in the project.
Region: Calgary, Alberta
Funding amount:$3,738,415
Number of youth engaged: 400 youth will be engaged to test and provide feedback on the toolkit that is being developed through this project.

Organization: 360ºkids
Project title:Base 4 Success
Description: Over 132 weeks, 360° Kids Support Services will deliver employment skills training and quality employment opportunity interventions to assist 225 youth facing barriers, including 11 Indigenous youth, 135 visible minority youth and 67 youth with disabilities. These interventions and supports will enable them to develop their skills and employability to prepare them to obtain and keep employment.
Region: Markham, Ontario
Funding amount: $2,799,997
Number of placements:225 youth

Organization: Victoria County Career Services (VCCS)
Project title: VCCS - Youth Success Through Employment Practice (YSTEP)
Description: Over a period of 156 weeks, Victoria County Career Service Inc. will deliver employment skills training, employment services and quality employment opportunities to assist 84 youth facing barriers, including 20 youth with disabilities and 42 youth from rural communities. The interventions and supports will enable them to develop their skills and employability to prepare them to obtain and keep employment.
Region: Lindsay, Ontario
Funding amount: $1,921,631
Number of placements:84 youth

Organization: CEE Centre for Young Black Professionals
Project title: From Neet to EET 2.0
Description: With this funding the Centre will help Black youth that are furthest from the labour market by offering them hard skills training, job placement and career coaching. The project and its skills training suite will help create over 165 job placements for Black youth.
Region:Toronto, Ontario
Funding amount:$1,718,675
Number of placements: 165

Organization: Living Rock Ministries
Project title: TRI-Rock
Description: Over 156 weeks, Living Rock Ministries will deliver employment skills training, followed by quality employment opportunity interventions, to assist 125 youth facing barriers, including 120 youth with disabilities, 13 Indigenous youth and 13 visible minority youth, giving them the opportunity to benefit from the interventions and supports that will enable them to develop their skills and employability to prepare them to obtain and keep employment.
Region: Hamilton, Ontario
Funding amount: $1,500,000
Number of placements: 125 youth

Associated Links

World Youth Skills Day
Innovative Work-Integrated Learning Initiative
Youth Employment and Skills Strategy
Canada Summer Jobs

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SOURCE Employment and Social Development Canada