Shoulder Tappers will point students toward tech, trades

Nanaimo-Ladysmith is one of 22 school districts to receive a $25,000 ’shoulder tapper’ grant from the Ministry of Education.

Nanaimo-Ladysmith is one of 22 school districts to receive a $25,000 ’shoulder tapper’ grant from the Ministry of Education.

The program ‘enlists career co-ordinators or recruitment specialists’ to work with students, helping them connect with trades, technical training and on the job experience.

Shoulder Tappers will help the province meet its B.C. Skills for Jobs ‘blueprint’, which was launched in 2014 to get students more interested in skilled trades as a career choice.

It also aligns with the new K-12 curriculum, being phased in over the next three years, which will introduce new standards in mathematics, sciences and applied design skills and technology.

“These grants will help districts implement Shoulder Tapper programs that can point students to the path forward and connect them with invaluable training, mentorship and career exploration,” said Education Minister Mike Bernier.

“Parents want us to make sure their children get all the help they need to chart a path to success after high school. ‘

Co-ordinators help mentor elementary and secondary school students and facilitate student access to technical, academic, and vocational courses in industries as diverse as aircraft engineering, heavy-duty mechanics, information technology, and early childhood education.

The co-ordinators also work closely with employers, the Industry Training Authority and the CES Career Education Society to connect students with opportunities.