The need to replace retiring workers is greater for skilled trades workers than for other occupations. In response, the Ontario government is investing $5.3 million in Spark Power Corporation, to support new and enhanced training for electrical workers.
A recent government announcement stated, “The Skills Development Fund investment of $5.3 million to Spark Power Corp provides an opportunity to deliver advanced training and employee development.”
It will provide free training and upgrade their existing online, on-the-job and in-classroom education programming. Spark Power will also create scholarships to encourage youth to pursue rewarding careers in electrical professions. The program was announced by Monte McNaughton, Minister of Labour, Training and Skills Development.
“Young people need to know that a career in the electrical trades is in-demand, exciting and within reach,” said Minister McNaughton.
Spark Power’s free training is expected to start in August 2021, and will include electrical maintenance, power generation systems and health and safety regulations for their workers and potential new employees. The new program will use a variety of modern learning techniques that make the training safer and more effective, including virtual reality and augmented reality, webinars, online training, hands-on training and job shadowing.
“We are thrilled to receive grant funding from the Skills Development Fund,̈ said Richard Jackson, President & CEO of Spark Power.
Spark Power is focusing on the company’s electricians, technicians, and apprentices. This year-long program will enable them to continue implementing and expanding innovative educational technologies, cross-team training, and outreach to local high schools and post secondary institutions to recruit new talent within the power sector.
In addition to creating scholarships, Spark Power will provide paid placements for co-op students and apprentices to help them start their careers. Spark Power is an electrical company based in the community of Oakville.
In 2016, nearly 1 in 3 journeypersons in Ontario were over the age of 55.