Rock to Road

Alberta helps Indigenous people enter trades

May 10, 2017  By Government of Alberta

Colin Belliveau, Director of Training and Apprenticeship, Alberta Carpenters Training Centre, Richard Feehan, Minister of Indigenous Relations, Marlin Schmidt, Minister of Advanced Education, Jon Carson, MLA Edmonton-Meadowlark. Photo: Government of Alberta

May 10, 2017 – The Alberta government is funding a pre-apprenticeship program to help Indigenous people pursue careers in the construction trades. 

A grant of $500,000 will go toward the Trade Winds to Success Training Society’s 16-week pre-apprenticeship program. It offers classroom and hands-on instruction to students pursuing careers as carpenters, electricians, ironworkers, millwrights, plumbers, steam/pipefitters, welders or insulators.

“Indigenous people represent the fastest-growing section of our country’s workforce; investing to get people the skills and training they’ll need to find and keep good jobs is part of our plan to build a strong middle class,” said Patty Hajdu, federal Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour.

The training program also incorporates Indigenous cultural practices, such as Elder mentorship and a daily smudge ceremony. As well, instructors have a better understanding of the unique issues that Indigenous students can face and are able to help them overcome challenges and barriers to success.


“Alberta is working to make life better for Indigenous peoples by ensuring they have every opportunity to participate in all aspects of the labour force and economy. Indigenous people are vital to maintaining a strong and stable workforce and this program will help address some of the barriers faced by Indigenous people in fully participating in Alberta’s economy,” said Richard Feehan, Minister of Indigenous Relations.

“We’re helping Albertans get the right skills and education needed for good-paying jobs as our economy rebounds. Our funding means Trade Winds to Success can continue providing these pre-apprenticeship skills to Alberta’s Indigenous peoples as they prepare for rewarding careers, added Marlin Schmidt, Minister of Advanced Education.

“Trade Winds to Success is honoured to receive this support from the Alberta government. This grant will help us to provide the tools and resources that Indigenous students need to be successful in the trades and to create positive change in their lives,” said Kathleen Thompson, interim executive director, Trade Winds to Success Training Society.

Print this page


Stories continue below