July 10, 2012
Northern Skills Training Pilot Gains Momentum with Workers
Prince George BC – The Northern Skills Training Pilot (NST) was funded through a labour market agreement between the Governments of Canada and British Columbia and administered by the Ministry of Jobs and Tourism and Innovation. NST is a $3 million dollar pilot providing skills enhancement to 850 employed United Steelworker members in forestry and mining throughout northern B.C.
Close to 300 USW members have entered the program to date, taking a wide range of courses and training which will benefit them in meeting the challenges in the future with apprenticeships on the rise and new technology entering the work places.
“Our challenge to-day is the skills shortage and providing the opportunity for both new employees and long tenured workers to access the resources to improve their skill set to allow them the opportunity to advance, is an important component in addressing this shortage” said Frank Everitt President USW local 1-424.
“In the beginning I was a little nervous about entering this program - being out of school for so many years – but I knew that computers were common at work and now was the time to learn. It’s really opened up a lot of opportunities and proved to me that learning again is possible and I have eliminated my personal fears,” said student Ranko Mijatovic.
“We are well on track with this pilot to achieving our government’s goal to create more opportunities for workers in Northern B.C. As the largest union in the North, the United Steelworkers are well positioned to encourage and help workers gain the essential skills training and education needed to up-skill, work and prosper in their home communities,” said Minister Pat Bell.
The pilot project (NST) started taking in participants early February 2012 and ends March 30th 2013.
For further information
Frank Everitt 250-563-7771