A joint initiative with the Ontario government and the Skilled Trades College of Canada is giving students interested in bricklaying the opportunity to apprentice and learn about skilled masonry without paying tuition. The program offers connection to steady employment to graduates in a time when skilled masons are greatly needed in the GTA.
This pilot program offers fast track education to apprenticeship in the masonry field for at-need students. Among them, Salah Dib, a Syrian refugee who praises the program for its focus on safety procedures, timeframe and accessibility.
According to a report by the Toronto Star:
“A lack of skilled bricklayers spurred the private college to offer the accelerated course.”
“The trade has experienced a severe shortage in manpower and they can’t accommodate the amount of homes being built and it’s affecting productivity,” said Ralph Cerasuolo, the director of the college. “The majority of homes in the GTA, people want brick,” noting that Rescon, a builders organization, approached the college one year ago to set a program in motion to eventually meet demand in the area.
The field has such great demand in fact, that the college hopes to expand the program to 200 students by 2020.
Hopefully other colleges in Canada follow suit and develop more programs accepting students to the skilled trades. Evidently, there are many stable career opportunities in the field.