Why consider a career in THE SKILLED TRADES?

Why consider a career in

Traditionally, the skilled trades have been considered a male profession - an outdated view that contributes to the current under-representation of women in the trades, and, ultimately, the worker shortage in the skilled trades. The reality is that the skilled trades are for anyone regardless of gender, and an apprenticeship provides both financial and practical advantages to women pursuing this career path.

Apprenticeships are a paid education path to a well-paying career with great benefits. Via an apprenticeship, women can acquire the skills they need to gain skills and become experienced craftspeople with the potential for a long career. Due to an ongoing and systemic shortage of workers in the skilled trades, skilled trade jobs are in high demand, providing greater employment opportunities and increased security.

A job in the skilled trades not only allows you to gain new skills, but as you advance, you will also gain access to better-paid, or more flexible opportunities. Your increasing skills and reputation provide an opportunity to become self-employed, and your path can also lead to areas of expertise within your field, or even make a switch to training others or being involved in the administration or logistical side of a business.

With the current shortage of workers in the skilled trades only expected to get worse, governments and businesses recognize that encouraging and increasing female participation is an integral part of the solution to help address the skilled trades gap, and this often takes the form of additional financial support and training for female apprentices.

Pathways to an Apprenticeship

Beyond the standard apprenticeship programs, such as OYAP or college courses, multiple organizations and program providers frequently offer additional support for female apprentices, in the form of career exploration, training, financial support, provision of equipment, training in employability skills and job-hunting tactics and more. Examples include the 'Jill of all Trades' program by Conestoga College and Centennial College and We Build-A-Dream's various #HerPower programs and expos.

We recommend checking out our Women in the Trades Network page to view the many women-centric organizations that frequently offer programs and support for women interested in learning more about the trades.

Follow our social media pages (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Linked In) to be kept in the loop regarding other programs and opportunities as they become available.


Mentoring & Support - The SOY Advantage

Support Ontario Youth provides not only technical mentors for their sponsored apprentices but also a dedicated female mentor for our female apprentices.

Brandi Ferenc is a licensed Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Systems Mechanic and an active and passionate advocate for women in the skilled trades. With over 14 years of experience in the trade, she is proud to provide unique insights and mentorship to female apprentices in construction and motive power trades.

Financial Support for Female Apprentices

There is a range of financial supports available for all apprentices, from Government grants to private sector scholarships. Check out the links below to view a range of apprenticeship financial supports and grants, as well as our current range of scholarships.

Ready to be an Apprentice?

Does this sound like something you’d thrive at? Are you ready to take the next step towards a rewarding career in the trades? Your career starts here! Browse through the opportunities we have available and submit your application today!

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This Employment Ontario Program is funded in part by the Government of Canada and the Government of Ontario.