April 23, 2010
FREDERICTON (CNB) - Top anglophone and francophone students from across the province will put their trades and technology skills to the test at the annual Trades Recognition and Skills Canada NB provincial competitions on Saturday, April 24, in Fredericton and Oromocto.
Winners will join a team of 31 New Brunswick students at the Canadian Skills Competition, May 20-23 in Waterloo, Ont.
Students will compete at Oromocto High School in: carpentry, auto service, welding, cabinetmaking, workplace safety, electrical installations, TV / video production and architectural technology and design. Students in cooking and fashion technology will compete at Fredericton High School.
"Investment in trades and technology has been a priority for the provincial government as we shift our education system toward one that will ensure our students have the skills and knowledge they need to succeed in the 21st century global economy," said Education Minister Roland Haché. "We are now seeing the results of our investment with increased enrolments in the trades and technology courses and more students finding something about which they are passionate."
Since 2006, the provincial government has increased access to trades and technology, and introduced more than three dozen new trades courses, including technology, welding, culinary arts, health sciences, carpentry and construction.
"It is important that our young people get the chance to see the opportunities of making a living in the trades and technological fields and that they realize that these are available to them right here in the province," said Luc Morin, executive director of Skills Canada NB. "The more exposure they get to these possibilities at a young age, the more informed and equipped they will be to make decisions when the time comes to continue into their post-secondary education."
The provincial government has invested more than $3 million to strengthen vocational training in both anglophone and francophone sectors. Shop facilities have been retrofitted and enhanced, and professional development provided for teachers. This year's investment will be used to buy equipment and materials; provide further training for teachers; improve infrastructure; provide a safe environment for the 10 recently-developed courses; and expand the range of high school trades courses.
MEDIA CONTACT: Valerie Kilfoil, communications, Department of Education, 506-444-4919, Luc Morin, Skills Canada, 506-457-2762.