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Ontario invests $5.2 million in York University programs for skilled newcomers

The Ontario government will invest $5.2 million in three York University programs designed to help highly skilled newcomers to Ontario become licensed and find jobs in their field more quickly.

Michael Chan, Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, announced the funding at York University on August 20, 2009, for the University's new bridge training programs for information technologists and business professionals, and an existing nursing program.

Bridge training programs help newcomers who trained overseas get the local training they need to find a job in their field and contribute to Ontario's economy. The programs provide transitional supports such as international skills assessment, technical training, local work experience, occupation-specific language training, and mentorships.

Minister Chan noted, "Ontario's newcomers are both educated and skilled. This investment in bridge training will help employers access their qualifications and talent sooner."

Specifically, the funding will support an existing bridging program in nursing, to increase success rates for internationally educated nurses on the Canadian Registered Nurses Examination. Since 2005, York's bridge training project has helped 136 internationally educated nurses graduate with a BScN, a qualification that helps them become licensed and employed in Ontario.

The new bridging project in business, finance and administration, will help internationally educated professionals obtain certification and employment by providing training courses in Ontario business culture, ethics, law, taxation and math. Occupation-specific language training, Canadian work experience and mentorship are also offered.

In the information technology field, the new bridging project at York will address the gaps in internationally educated IT professionals so they can find work in their field or a related field quickly. The course will focus on necessary technical upgrading, occupation-specific language training, cross-cultural competencies and mentorship.

"This is good news for newcomers, our community and the economy," said York West MPP Mario Sergio."Today's investment means more internationally trained newcomers will get jobs that match their education, skills and experience."

*Source: http://www.yorku.ca/mediar/archive/Release.php?Release=1724

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