Learn the trades tuition-free at Georgian Muskoka



With opportunities around every corner, there has never been a better time to consider a career in the trades.

Those looking for a quality education and a chance to get a head start on the competition can now do so right here in Muskoka with Georgian College’s pre-apprenticeship program.

The pre-apprenticeship program covers a range of different subjects including HVAC, carpentry, and electrical.

Students can quickly access success by enrolling in this 14-week program now. The start date of the program is September 13th. Applications are open now, with an application deadline of September 1.

The program gives students the chance to experience first-hand a range of different occupations, to see which ones best suit their tastes.

“This course gave me a perspective that I could never have gotten in my job,” says student Elias Astathis. “I have the right and the time to learn how to do the job and why the job should be done that way. It helped me decide on the profession I want to devote to.

Despite the pandemic, the school has been able to continue to provide a real-life experience for students looking to enter the trades.

The program is funded by the Government of Ontario and is free. Essentially, the purpose of the pre-apprenticeship program is to allow students to try out a range of trades without risk before deciding which one they would like to pursue as a career.

“This program gives you a very good opportunity to get started in a profession and to determine which profession you want to do,” explains student Fidel Roye.

According to Greaves, the program is perfect for those looking to get into the trades – and especially the construction industry – but may not be sure which would be the best fit for them.

“We know that the construction industry accounts for about 23 or 24% of full-time jobs in the Muskoka region. It is actually the largest employer of full-time people, and we know there is a huge need for entry-level workers in the construction industry, ”says Mac Greaves, Associate Dean and Director of the Muskoka Campus .

The program is open to men and women 16 years of age or older who are Canadian citizens or landed immigrants and who have not previously registered as apprentices.

Greaves says the program has a high success rate, with many students moving quickly into apprenticeship after completing their internship. Other students decided to continue their studies at Georgian College.

He also points out that in addition to learning the trades, the pre-apprenticeship program also offers students the opportunity to take additional training like working at heights, first aid, and lockout and tagout training.

“These are things that a normal entry-level worker should learn on their own, so it’s provided to them in the pre-apprenticeship program,” said Greaves. “We’re doing everything we can to get them career-ready in 14 weeks for an entry-level career in the construction trades.

The staff who run the program have years of experience in the trades. This includes John Pearce, who has been teaching carpentry programs for over 17 years.

“During the four-week carpentry program, participants work as a team to build small wood-frame structures,” Pearce said. “I witnessed first-hand the participants gaining skills and confidence during our brief stay together in the carpentry workshop in each session. Usually strangers to each other at the start of the program, participants quickly split into teams and collaborate to construct large-scale buildings.

Interested students can watch this video experience a day in the life of a Georgian student on the Muskoka campus. For more information visit their website here.

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