Alberta launches work-integrated learning pilot program


Alberta is helping students be more job-ready with a new learning program.

The government is investing $3.6 million through a Work-Integrated Learning Industry Voucher pilot program to provide learning opportunities for locals.

“Learning directly from mentors and seasoned professionals – while getting real-life work experience – is one of the best ways to set students up for success in their future careers,” says Demetrios Nicolaides, minister of advanced education. “In addition to providing valuable opportunities for our students, these work placements help build relationships between industry and educators to ensure programs are responsive to the needs of both students and employers.”

This pilot program will help fund paid work-integrated learning placements for students with employers in Alberta’s priority sectors.

Over the next three years, this pilot initiative will provide about 650 students with a paid work placement to learn hands-on from professionals in their field, in partnership with Technology Alberta, Alberta Construction Association and BioAlberta.

It will also provide employers a grant of up to $5,000 per student placement, which is matched by the employer.

Nearly a third of young people globally feel their current education is not preparing them with the skills they need to get jobs, according to UNICEF.

“Work-integrated learning opportunities will bridge the gap between advanced education and industry, increasing value for students,” says Liam Hunter, director, Alberta Students’ Executive Council. “The ability to complete formal education while earning on-the-job work experience relevant to a student’s learning path will provide Alberta students key first pieces needed to have a meaningful and rewarding career.”