Skills development program extended after successful first year

Some 132 graduates have completed program, with partnerships coming out of Youth Skills Connection

A local skills development program designed to provide in-class training and placement opportunities for local youth has proven to be beneficial for local industry, so much so that the Sarnia-Lambton Youth Skills Connection (YSC), which helps youth age 15 – 29 enhance their skills to meet the needs of regional employers, has been extended beyond its original one-year application.

The program, which is offered in partnership with Lambton College, Sarnia-Lambton Economic Partnership (SLEP), Bioindustrial Innovation Canada (BIC) and Sarnia-Lambton Industrial Alliance (SLIA), has received a great response. Since launching a year ago, 227 youth have participated and 132 graduates have completed the program across 12 different courses. Additionally, the YSC has developed 19 partnerships with local companies and community organizations, resulting in 29 paid placements.

“It’s thanks to the IoT & Modern Web Specialist course that I was able to quit my job working in a fast food restaurant and begin my career working for a local IT company,” says Laura Clements, who completed the YSC program in February. “Overall, it was a fantastic experience. I would recommend it to anyone looking to upgrade or improve their skills to make that career change they have been hoping for.”

Following the success of its first lineup of course offerings, YSC recently established a Wastewater Simulation course in collaboration with the College’s Lambton Water Centre and Ontario Clean Water Agency (OCWA). Participants of the latest program will have the opportunity to gain hands-on experience that directly complements their classroom learning.

Participants will have the opportunity to simulate the impact of a treatment process when industry equipment is out of service, allowing them to practice troubleshooting techniques and discuss the steps to take when reporting out-of-compliance issues to the Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change. The simulation software is designed to train and educate new operators in the field of wastewater treatment. With the use of this software, wastewater operators can develop and optimize advanced control schemes, predict effluent quality under varying conditions, conduct planning and capacity analysis or offer sophisticated training and development programs with a dynamic model of an actual “real-world” or simulated treatment plant.

For those interested in gaining new skills or upgrading their current skills, YSC will be offering the following summer courses:

• Internet of Things & Modern Web Specialist – Location: Sarnia, Date: May 14, 2018, 10 Weeks

• Business Development, Sales & Marketing – Location: Lambton College, Date: May 7-11, 2018

• Enhanced Business Development & Project Management – Location: Lambton College, Date: May 14-18, 2018

• Practical Web & Mobile Application Building Basic – Location: Toronto (for Lambton College Students), Date: May 22 – June 19, 2018

• OCWA Wastewater Simulation Training – Location: Sarnia Lambton Research Park, Date: July 17 – 18 2018

• Practical Web & Mobile Application Building Advanced – Location: Toronto (for Lambton College Students), Date: July 17 – August 14, 2018

For more information on the Sarnia-Lambton Youth Skills program, please go to sarniaysc.ca.

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