Apprenticeship key for job opportunities: premier
Nova Scotia’s premier is touting youth trades training programs as an important part of providing eventual job opportunities in the province’s struggling economy.
Stephen McNeil spoke at a Hal- ifax car dealership Tuesday to promote the Nova Scotia Apprenticeship Agency and programs that have provided more than 500 students with trades experience.
He stressed the programs will only be a success if private companies join in to provide training opportunities.
“Without the ability for that apprentice to go out in industry it (the effort) really falls flat,’’ said McNeil. “It means fewer people complete their full apprenticeship and there are fewer tradespeople.’’
The province says the first year of the agency has seen 180 new employers sign on with programs that have registered more than 1,300 new apprentices and 100 youth apprentices.
The agency says it has spent about $900,000 in youth apprenticeship programs over the past year. Troy Bennett, fixed operations manager at Atlantic Acura, said he believes the apprenticeship programs are an investment in the future for businesses.
Bennett said it’s critical to have the pool of talent available as companies such as his continue to grow.
“Our future is at risk if we are not investing,’’ Bennett said.