The Ontario Government announced plans to invest some $19 million to help train the next generation of workers for the province’s auto manufacturing and advanced manufacturing industries to create more hands-on learning opportunities for postsecondary students, recent graduates and apprentices.
“Ontario’s auto sector needs highly skilled people to master the challenges of economic change and stiff global competition,” said Monte McNaughton, Minister of Labour, Training and Skills Development. “Through this investment, we not only help our future engineers, designers, managers, technicians and tradespeople to apply their studies to real world problems, we also allow them to explore the auto industry as a career option.”
As part of its Driving Prosperity Plan, the provincial government has released a call for proposals for a second round of hands-on learning projects. We are creating as many as 4,000 paid work placements between 10 weeks and four months. Automotive manufacturing and advanced manufacturing companies with a footprint in the auto sector, industry associations, postsecondary institutions, and other not-for-profit organizations are encouraged to submit proposals through the Transfer Payment Ontario website.
The first round of the Career Ready Fund’s Auto Stream created more than 1,000 learning opportunities for postsecondary students, recent grads and apprentices through projects by Toyota, Honda, Ford and Fiat Chrysler, as well as from the broader supply chain through Automotive Parts Manufacturers’ Association and the Canadian Tooling and Machining Association.
“Hands-on, experience-based learning is a critical part of educating the next generation of workers,” said Ross Romano, Minister of Colleges and Universities. “It provides employers and students the opportunity to build connections and ensure that our students are given the training and tools they need to be successful in their careers.”
“Once again, Ontario’s automotive and tool, mold and die sectors have demonstrated their steadfast commitment to skills training and we’re delighted to continue this productive partnership as part of our Driving Prosperity auto plan,” said Vic Fedeli, Minister of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade. “Ontario’s highly skilled and productive auto workers are among the province’s greatest assets as we advocate for new industry investment and production mandates with global auto makers.”
“The Career Ready Fund’s Auto Stream helped to create permanent connections between the next generation of Ontario leaders and the limitless potential of its automotive sector,” said Flavio Volpe, president of the Automotive Parts Manufacturers’ Association. “This Fund bridges the most acute gap we all have to a sustainable future for our sector, and it ensures that the brightest talent finds a home within the province’s biggest industry.”
“The core of any manufacturing operation is the skilled workforce. We are all aware of the current skilled trade shortages, and the demographic reality that it will get worse. This needs to change,” said Tim Galbraith, sales Manager at Cavalier Tool and Manufacturing. “It has been refreshing to hear that Premier Ford’s administration has made this a priority of the government. Access to, and funding of, the resources required to bolster the numbers of trades is imperative if Ontario is to maintain its leadership role as the manufacturing heart of Canada.”