Successful Student Work Placement Program increases access to on-the-job paid work

From: Employment and Social Development Canada

84,000 work placements will be created by 2023-24

May 21, 2019 Montréal, Quebec Employment and Social Development Canada

When post-secondary students get the chance to learn on-the-job, they build career skills, their resumes and connections that help them get great jobs when they graduate. Work-integrated learning through the Student Work Placement Program is how the Government of Canada will help Canada’s youth gain these relevant, real-life work experiences.

That is why, in Budget 2019, the Government committed to creating 84,000 work placements by 2023-24. This new commitment is the next step towards the Government of Canada’s goal to ensure that, within 10 years, every young Canadian who wants a work-integrated learning opportunity can get one.

Today, Rachel Bendayan, Member of Parliament for Outremont, on behalf of the Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour, spoke at the Université de Montréal about the successful partnerships with BioTalent Canada and the Environmental Careers Organization of Canada and how they are helping young Canadians get the experience and skills they need through the Student Work Placement Program. To date, the Student Work Placements Program has created over 3,200 placements across Canada and the Program is on track to create 11,500 placements in the STEM and business fields by March 2021.

Students in the Program benefit from higher earnings and more employment opportunities in fields closely related to their studies. Partnerships between employers, including small and mid-sized enterprises and post-secondary institutions, play an important role in developing skills training to better prepare Canadian students for the workforce.

“On-the-job training through work-integrated learning gives post-secondary students real-life work experience for real-life jobs. Expanding the opportunities in Canada for student work placements means that more students will be work-ready when they graduate.”

– The Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour

“Our government is helping to build a skilled workforce in Canada through student work placements. By creating stronger partnerships between business and universities, colleges and polytechnics, we are setting young people to succeed in the workforce.”

– Rachel Bendayan, Member of Parliament for Outremont

“Student work placements improve employability after students graduate, but also serve as excellent training enhancements. We strongly encourage all of our students to expose themselves to the realities of working in their field.”

– Sylvie Normandeau, Assistant Vice-Rector for Undergraduate Studies and Continuing Education at Université de Montréal.

“We’ve seen firsthand not only the benefit to businesses in terms of capacity for growth, but also the invaluable connections and experiences that students have gained. ECO Canada is eager to build on the momentum achieved thus far and continue to facilitate job opportunities for Canada’s emerging environmental professionals.” – Angie Huk, Vice President, Marketing & Customer Engagement

Quick facts

  • 3,200 student work placements have been created to date. 48% of these have been for students from under-represented groups and first-year students.

  • 1,082 employers have partnered with over 120 post-secondary education institutions to offer student work placements across Canada. 88% of employers were small and medium sized enterprises.

  • Budget 2019 proposed to:

    • create up to 20,000 new student work placements per year by 2023-24 with $631.2 million in funding over five years.
    • create an additional 20,000 placements per year by 2023-24 through new partnerships with innovative businesses with $150 million over four years.
    • support the Business/Higher Education Roundtable in creating an additional 44,000 student work placements by 2021-22 with $17 million over three years.
  • Launched in 2017, the Student Work Placement Program will create:

    • up to 10,000 paid student work placements in STEM and business fields and to build stronger partnerships between employers, polytechnics, universities and colleges with $73 million over four years. (Budget 2016)
    • up to 1,000 student work placements in the field of cyber security, as part of the National Cyber Security Strategy with $8.3 million in funding. (Budget 2018)
    • up to 500 new student work placements in the field of artificial intelligence with $3 million over three years. (Budget 2017)

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