EducationMatters is proud to support our students’ endeavors at the provincial and national Skills Competitions.
Skills provides students with an aptitude for trades and technical subjects to really shine and further hone their skills. 15% of Canada’s labour force population are actively employed as skilled trades people, with all provinces in need of further talent in this sector. There are amazing career opportunities across the country for talented individuals, and the Skills Competition provides valuable opportunities for students to find their talents and passions, and begin to think about future plans.
“Notwithstanding the general global economic uncertainty, government and many industry sectors are anticipating an economic recovery and a return to labour shortages (in 2010).” – Hon. Thomas Lukaszuk, Minister of Employment
Since 1992 the Alberta and Canadian Skills organizations have promoted trade and technical careers as occupations for Canadian youth. As almost everyone in our city knows, Calgary hosted the WorldSkills 2009 event and our Canadian participants earned the honour of winning many awards in their chosen disciplines.
With financial assistance from private businesses, service organizations and other donations through EducationMatters, the Calgary Board of Education (CBE) sent 75 talented youth to Edmonton to compete in the Alberta Skills competition in 2010. CBE students won four provincial gold awards plus eleven silver and bronze medals. The winners went on to participate in the national competition and Centennial High School’s Robotics team came home with a bronze medal! Participation in the competition is made possible by a group of dedicated CBE teachers who work hard to support and prepare students for the event each year; they know that keeping students engaged in the learning process will help them to graduate and go on to lead happy, healthy, productive lives after graduation, and Skills is a great way to inspire and encourage students to achieve their potential.
“Being on the robotics team has really benefited me by improving my team skills and boosting my confidence. It showed me that we can achieve anything if we really want it.” – Bryce, Centennial High School, 2010
On May 11-12, 2011, the CBE “Skills Champions” teachers hope to once again take students to Edmonton for the Alberta Skills competition. The goal is to increase student participation to 100 competitors. Winners from the province will earn a spot on Team Alberta and have the opportunity to showcase their skills at the 2011 Canadian Skills competition in Quebec City.
A major hurdle for the students in participating is the cost of attending the two-day provincial competition. Travel, registration fees, accommodation and meals are expensive (approximately $400/student) and are not provided through regular school funding. While some students may be able to afford these costs, many cannot.
“The Provincial Skills competition in Edmonton was really exciting. I learned so much. Winning the gold medal and earning a place on Team Alberta was a dream come true. I am now at SAIT working on my apprenticeship and for the first time in my life I am near the top of my class. The confidence I gained has changed the way I learn.” – Milio, Ernest Manning High School, 2010
With support from the Calgary community, we are helping students realize the many opportunities available for their future and ours!