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Fraser Valley Firm Readies Workers For Manufacturing Jobs

Fraser Valley – A new Community and Employer Partnership project will see 36 people hard at work training for in-demand jobs in the heavy industrial manufacturing sector.

The Province has provided $478,277 to support the heavy industrial manufacturing training program, which is offered in partnership with Chilliwack-based Mussell Crane Manufacturing and local employers, who joined forces after struggling to find enough skilled workers to fill available positions.

Three intakes of the Heavy Industrial Manufacturing Training Program will train eight to 12 participants at a time. Each participant will receive 10 weeks of employability and occupational skills training, including classroom training at the University of the Fraser Valley, forklift and crane operator training, basic rigging, fall protection, first aid, manufacturing safety and other skills. Participants also receive instruction in employment and life skills, as well as four weeks of on-the-job work experience with local employers and two weeks of job search support as they seek full-time employment. The program takes place over a year-long period running through March 2017.

More than two dozen local employers have partnered with the heavy industrial manufacturing training program to provide work experience and hire program participants.

The program is already up and running and there are still spaces available in the session that is running from Oct. 31, 2016 to Feb. 24, 2017. Anyone who is Employment Insurance-eligible and interested in this skills training opportunity can contact their local WorkBC Employment Services Centre for more information.

This is the second time Mussell Crane Manufacturing has offered this training program. In 2015-16, 36 participants completed the program and 32 of them found employment with local businesses as crew members, fabrication specialists, general labourers, assemblers and other roles.

The funding is provided through the Project-Based Labour Market Training stream of the Community and Employer Partnerships program.

The Community and Employer Partnerships program is featured in B.C.’s Skills for Jobs Blueprint and provides the supports people need to gain a foothold in the job market. Projects build on strong partnerships between industry and labour to connect British Columbians with classroom and on-the-job training, while making it easier for employers to hire the skilled workers they need – when and where they need them.

To date, more than 1,200 job seekers benefited from work experience and more than 240 projects have been funded throughout the province.

The Blueprint was launched two years ago to help British Columbians get the skills they need to be first in line for the almost one million job openings that are projected by 2024 and to re-engineer B.C.’s education programs toward a data-driven system focusing investments toward training for in-demand jobs.


Michelle Stilwell, Minister of Social Development and Social Innovation –

“It is exciting to see a training program like this that gives job-seekers the skills they need to approach employers who are looking to fill positions that require those same skills. The Government of B.C. is proud to support these job-seekers in their training and to play a role in helping employers find the skilled workers they need.”

John Martin, MLA for Chilliwack –

“Heavy industrial manufacturing is a key industry that keeps the Fraser Valley economy strong. The people going through this program will develop in-demand skills and connections with local employers that will help them build a great career in the sector.”

Heather Crawford, training manager, Mussell Crane Manufacturing –

“The heavy industrial manufacturing training program, community partners, employers and participants have exceeded our expectations at every level.  It is truly is a privilege to be part of these life changing programs.”

Peter Prediger, general manager, Lustre Products –

“One of the greatest issues that employers face is finding the right people – people with the attitude that really want to be engaged and work in industry. What Mussell Crane has done for us through the training program is developing people that come from other environments, other backgrounds and preparing them to work in industry. When they come, they’re ready to work.”

Carol Viera, program participant –

“I love it, absolutely love it. I love going back to school. I have learned so many things in life. They have life skills, resume building, the sky’s the limit.”

Ben Archie, program participant –

“I really enjoy the program. It’s a great group atmosphere. We got our first-aid ticket, fall protection – I think that will be great on my resume.”

Rolf Arnold, associate dean, faculty of applied and technical studies, University of the Fraser Valley (UFV) –

“UFV is proud to partner in work that reflects our commitments to education and service that directly benefit the economic and social development of our valley. The manufacturing industry is a major source of employment and a large economic driver in our region. It is an industry that makes major contributions to the dollars for the provincial economy. We are pleased to work with Mussell Crane Manufacturing in supporting this program to help students gain meaningful skills for future employment in the manufacturing industry.”

Learn More:

View a video of participants and employers who are benefitting from the heavy industrial manufacturing training program:

Read about how on-the-job training through the heavy industrial manufacturing training program made a difference for one job seeker:

For more information on Community and Employer

Find a local WorkBC Employment Services Centre:

Learn more about the Ministry of Social Development and Social Innovation:

For more information on B.C.’s Skills for Jobs Blueprint:

To find out more about the BC Jobs Plan:

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