How youth can get a head start on trades

VICTORIA – Youth can get a head start on a career while still in high school with one of the trade apprenticeship paths for youth. An apprenticeship is a combination of on-the-job training and classroom learning, providing the opportunity to start in the workforce and get a pay cheque while you learn a trade.

The Industry Training Authority (ITA) Youth Programs allows youth to start apprenticeship training and earn high school credits at the same time. This is a great way to save time and money and there is no need to quit high school to get a head start on a solid career that pays well.

In partnership with the Ministry of Education and secondary schools, ITA delivers two youth programs – Accelerated Credit Enrolment in Industry Training (ACE-IT), and Secondary School Apprenticeship (SSA). Participation in ITA's youth programs has increased from 861 participants in 2004 to 4,200 as of September 2012.

Accelerated Credit Enrolment in Industry Training (ACE-IT)

* High school students can attend a trades training class, usually at a college.
* There are no tuitions fees and you receive course credits towards high school graduation.
* Participants get the first year of post-secondary training free, and may be eligible for a $1,000 scholarship.
* Sign up for both SSA and ACE-IT and after graduation you're well on your way to achieving credit for the first year of your apprenticeship.
Secondary School Apprenticeship (SSA)

* Start an apprenticeship in high school, and get dual credit towards an apprenticeship and a high school diploma.
* By registering as a Secondary School Apprentice, you will become eligible for a $1,000 scholarship, and get a head start on earning your trade certification.
Funding Secondary School Apprentices can qualify for a $1,000 scholarship if they:

* Register in a school district SSA program prior to graduation
* Graduate with a Grade 12 Dogwood Diploma or Adult Dogwood Diploma
* Successfully complete SSA 11A, SSA 11B, SSA 12A and SSA 12B
* Maintain a C+ average or better on Grade 12 numbered courses
* Continue working or training full-time in the trade six months after high school graduation, or have 900 hours reported to ITA.
Check out the list of more than 100 apprenticeable B.C. trades at:
Talk to your high school counsellor about an apprenticeship, or contact the ITA:
Questions regarding Secondary School Apprenticeship scholarship can be directed to Anne Bowers at the Ministry of Education at 250 216-2834 or