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Posted: July 17, 2015

New equipment helps EK students get job-ready

The provincial government is investing $211,126 in new trades equipment at the College of the Rockies to support local students training for occupations critical to the economy, as part of B.C.’s Skills for Jobs Blueprint.

The College of the Rockies will use the funding to purchase welders, vibration monitoring equipment, a hydraulic puller set with mechanical pliers, and power quality analyzers.

“B.C. expects a million jobs by 2022 and many of them will be in the East Kootenay,” Kootenay East MLA Bill Bennett said. “Ensuring our workers have the skills they need to fill those jobs is a key part of the Skills for Jobs Blueprint. This funding is an example of how our government is responsive to labour market needs in our region.”

The B.C. government is investing $185 million over three years in new trades training equipment and facilities to support students entering in-demand sectors, including LNG, shipbuilding and ship repairs and construction.

Earlier this year, the government announced $325,274 to purchase new tools and equipment at COTR. In addition, $358,440 in funding since 2014 has created 112 additional seats at COTR, helping to reduce wait lists in high-demand trades programs.

B.C.’s Skills for Jobs Blueprint lays out a major shift to a data-driven system where training dollars and programs are targeted to jobs in demand. Funding and programs are evolving to meet labour market needs.

By 2022, there will be one million job openings in B.C. – more than 78% of jobs will require some form of post-secondary education.

Approximately 13% of the one million projected job openings to 2022 are for in-demand trade occupations in B.C.

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