Youth TRAIN in Trades

You can apply for Youth TRAIN in Trades if you are in high school and will be under the age of 20 when you complete the program.

Youth TRAIN in Trades

In partnership with VIU, VCC, PIC

Youth TRAIN in Trades

Our Youth TRAIN in Trades program is a provincially recognized partnership between Nanaimo Ladysmith Public Schools and partner Post-Secondary Institution. It enables high school students to work towards both their high school diploma and trade/technical post-secondary programs at the same time. Successful applicants benefit from having 100% of their Post-secondary tuition costs covered by the CTC.

As an Dual Credit student, you’ll attend a trades or applied skills training program at a partner post-secondary institution and receive credits that count towards your high-school diploma and at least one level of technical training for your industry training program.

Program Overview

Our current partners are VIU (Vancouver Island University), VCC (Vancouver Community College) and PIC (Pipe Fitting College of British Columbia).

Admission Requirements:

  • English
    • English 12 (50%) or
    • Communications 12 (67%) or
    • BCIT English Trades Entry Assessment (for applicants who have two years of education in an English-speaking country only)
  • Math: one of the following:
    • Principles of Mathematics 11 (60%) or
    • Applications of Mathematics 11 (60%) or
    • Apprenticeship and Workplace Mathematics 11 (60%) or
    • Foundations of Mathematics 11 (60%) or
    • Pre-Calculus 11 (60%) or
    • BCIT Math Trades Entry Assessment
  • BCIT Mechanical Reasoning Trades Entry Assessment

Recommended for Success

  • General Mechanics 11 or Automotive Mechanics 11 or Technical Education 11 or Physics 11
  • Good colour vision
  • An interest in mechanics
  • Courses in Aircraft Maintenance offered by the Air Cadets are helpful in preparing students for the program.

For more information see:

Work on cars while earning high school credits. By the time you graduate from high school, you could be skilled in the automotive collision repair trade and ready to work and start an apprenticeship. VCC is partnered with Nanaimo Ladysmith Public Schools  to provide exciting career exploration and skill training programs.

Admission Requirements:

  • Graduation from an appropriate career preparation program or meet the English and math requirements (English 11 or Communications 12) or equivalent.
  • Math 10 or equivalent.
  • Relevant trade experience is considered.

Admission Requirements:

  • Applicants may choose to apply to one of two tracks: (1) Foundation Program or (2) Youth Train in Trades (formerly ACE-IT) Program.

Foundation Program:

  • English 10 or equivalent
  • Apprentice & Workplace Math 10 or equivalent; or 80% on the VCC Basic Arithmetic Assessment
  • Science 10 or equivalent
  • Note:
  • All students must have minimum basic computer skills and access to an internet-connected computer/mobile device.

For more information see:

The Vancouver Island University Automotive Department provides both foundation and apprenticeship training. Foundation training is designed to prepare students for a career in the automotive repair trade. Graduates of this program may find work as apprentice automotive technicians, or as automotive parts persons/service writers. Job opportunities exist on Vancouver Island, and throughout BC and Canada. Upon receiving the Inter provincial Certificate, graduates are eligible to work anywhere in Canada.

Our program is taught by highly experienced Automotive Service Technicians who value hands-on, in-the-shop training methods whenever possible. We use customer owned vehicles for much of our training and we strive to keep the learning experience directly related to procedures and skills you will need to have in the automotive workplace. Classroom lectures are presented through dynamic PowerPoint presentations and also through CDX movie clips and graphics. All classroom homework and assignments are accessible through our online D2L (Desire2Learn) learning management system.

Contact us to take a tour of the Automotive shop and meet our instructors.

This 10-month program (full-time, 4 days per week) covers all aspects of Automotive/Mechanical Repair, including:

  • shop safety
  • tool and equipment use
  • vehicle maintenance servicing
  • vehicle braking systems
  • suspension steering systems
  • automotive electrical systems
  • engine mechanical systems
  • EFI, engine electronic controls
  • drive-train systems
  • welding
  • job finding skills

This is a technically intense, job orientated program for people who want to gain an apprenticeship as an Automotive Technician, or gain employment as a Parts Person or a Service Advisor in an Automotive Repair facility. It is not a general interest course for people wanting to learn how to maintain their own vehicles.

A mandatory Employment Skills Module prepares students for the workforce and all students participate in three weeks of work experience at a local automotive business.

Graduates of the program may receive credit for the technical portion of the first year of the Automotive Service Technician Apprenticeship Program. To become a journeyperson, graduates would find a position as an automotive apprentice and then return to school for 6 or 7 weeks per year until completion of their 4th year.

Admission Requirements:

This is a 10-month certificate program designed to prepare students for a career in Baking using practical assignments in an industrial setting.

In addition to theory courses, the program covers artisan and commercial breads, rolls, sweet yeast products, pies, puff pastry, cookies, cakes, decoration, icing and finishing, French pastries, muffins, cup cakes, marzipan and chocolate. Also covered in the program are safety, conventional kitchen skills, sanitation, personal skills, and elementary management procedures. Students will also be trained in the operation and use of our newly built wood-fired brick oven (the first in a Canadian Educational facility).

You will spend one hour each day in classroom lectures and the rest of the time in practical training. Because the assignments are light many students are able to work part-time accumulating apprenticeship hours.

Admission Requirements

The program base of topics cover the Level 1 carpentry apprenticeship technical training and its major focus is to better prepare students for employment as carpentry apprentices in the building industry.

Strong ties with the Canadian Home Builders Association-Nanaimo, City of Nanaimo building officials, and many other builders, sub-trades and suppliers, have helped create a close cooperative training partnership with Nanaimo’s local building industry.

This full-time program is built upon the program outline developed collaboratively by industry and VIU, and follows the BC Provincial Apprenticeship Level 1 program competencies. The program focuses on basic carpentry skills and framing. The curriculum seeks an effective balance between hands-on learning activities supported with specific academic and theoretical frameworks.

Admission Requirements

The program framework includes:

  • Residential Construction Career Exploration
  • Construction Math
  • Safe Work Practices
  • Drawings and Specifications
  • Materials Identification
  • Hand Tools
  • Portable Power Tools
  • Stationary Tools
  • Survey Instruments
  • Concrete Form Work
  • Residential House Framing
  • Windows and Doors
  • Residential Building Renovations
  • Building Science
  • Shop Skills
  • Work Experience

The Culinary Arts Certificate consists of the 28-week Professional Cook 1 (PC1) The Certificate provides students with culinary training and management skills, giving them the leading edge to advancement in the culinary profession. Upon entering the Certificate program, culinary students are registered as Professional Cook 1 apprentices, gaining technical training while accruing apprentice hours. As a part of both the Culinary Arts Certificate, students participate in a paid co-op work placement, gaining industry work experience and additional apprentice hours.

Upon entering the program, culinary students:

  • Are registered as Professional Cook apprentices. The Culinary Arts Certificate consists of 28-week Professional Cook 1 (PC1).
  • At the beginning of the first year of the Certificate program, students spend three weeks in our state of the art food lab, focusing on learning basic cooking skills and good culinary habits without production pressure. Students then move to the main kitchen, rotating through five separate sections.
  • Students will prepare breakfast, vegetables, starches, and proteins, as well as study cold kitchen, pastry, and meat cutting. Food produced by the students is served in the VIU cafeterias and Discovery Room dining room.

Admission Requirements – Culinary Arts Certificate

For more information see: Culinary

The Foundation Electrician program provides trades training that grants graduates a Vancouver Island University certificate as well as ITA Electrician Level I Certification. Graduates of this program may receive credit towards the technical portion of the first year of the Electrical Apprenticeship program. In order to complete the apprenticeship and become a journeyperson, graduates would find an employer in the industry to provide the on–the–job training and 10 weeks in–school training per year in each of the next three years.

Admission Requirements

  • Grade 12, or equivalent, or mature student status.
  • Minimum 17 years of age.
  • Minimum grade “C” in English 11 or Technical and Professional Communications 12.
  • Minimum grade of “C” in one of Principles of Mathematics 11, Applications of Mathematics 11, Foundations of Mathematics 11, or Pre-calculus 11.
  • Valid BC driver’s license.
  • Successful completion of assessment testing.
  • See also Trades general admission requirements.

For more information see: Electrician

The VIU Hairdressing program provides students with high quality education in the art and science of Hairdressing at the foundation level. The Pivot Point Designer Approach curriculum is implemented throughout this 10 month, 1500 hour program. Highly educated and experienced instructors ensure that students are provided with the appropriate learning opportunities to build competency in both the theoretical and practical application of skills. Learning is accomplished through practical instruction and student participation with equipment, tools and materials normally used in salons. Students quickly advance to performing services on clients in the VIU Hairdressing salon. Students will complete two practicums and will have an opportunity to take part in hairdressing competitions.

Admission Requirements

For more information see: Hairdressing

The Heavy Equipment Operator Program at VIU leads to a Certificate of Qualifications (This is not a Red Seal Trade in BC) This program is a combination of four parts: The Road Builder & Heavey Construction Foundation Program (4 weeks) The Heavy Equipment Operator Level 1 Apprenticeship (5 weeks), An  Equipment Endorsement (1 to 8 weeks) and finally a 4-week Work Experience. The CTC program sponsors students for the Road Builder Foundation Program and The Heavy Equipment Operator Level 1 Apprenticeship (9 weeks total). It is encouraged that students will continue on with Equipment Endorsement and work experience components. The Cost for the last two components is the responsibility of the student.

Students who are successful in the completion of the Foundation, Technician, and Specialized Machine Operator Training will be well-positioned to gain employment as a Backhoe, Dozer, Excavator, Front End Loader, Articulated Rock Truck, Grader, Skid Steer or Dump Truck & Pup Operator. This program has been identified as a preferred pre-requisite by Industry Employers for entry into the Road Builder & Heavy Construction

Admission Requirements

  • Assessment testing and Personal Profile
  • Good health, free of vision, hearing, or respiratory ailments
  • N Drivers Licence
  • Grade 12 or Equivalent

For more information see: Heavy Equipment Operator Certificate

This program is suited to individuals with all levels of mechanical experience who meet the listed admission requirements. Upon successful completion of the program students receive a certificate in Heavy Mechanical Trades Foundation with level one theory credit and four hundred fifty hours work based training time. This allows the graduate to choose one of the following four trades as an apprentice: Heavy Duty Equipment Technician, Truck Transport Mechanic, Transport Trailer Technician or Diesel Engine Mechanic.

Students have an opportunity during the program to obtain airbrake endorsement, forklift certification, and driver training up to Class 1 at a special student rate.

Admission Requirements

For more information see: Heavy Mechanical Trades Foundation

The curriculum used in this program meets the provincial standards set for all one-year horticulture foundation programs.

Approximately 50% of the program will be spent in actual “hands-on” training on- and off-campus. This includes three months working in the industry.

The program is taught at the G.R. Paine Horticulture Centre, on a 5-acre site near the Nanaimo campus. The site contains a “Harnoise Nordique” style greenhouse, a headerhouse, a classroom and lab facility, as well as a containerized nursery. Students also practice their skills at the Milner Gardens and Woodland, in Qualicum, a garden estate environment where they participate in the day-to-day, season-to-season operational activities.

Admission Requirements

  • General Trades admission requirements apply.
  • English 12 with minimum “C” grade, or equivalent, or successful completion of English assessment test.
  • Minimum “C” grade in one of Principles of Mathematics 11, Applications of Mathematics 11, Foundations of Mathematics 11, Apprenticeship and Workplace Mathematics 11, or successful completion of assessment test.
  • Letter, at time of application, indicating reasons for applying to the program and outlining any previous horticultural experience, as well as future career goals.
  • Interview.
  • Fitness required to participate in physical aspects of the program and industry.

For more information see: Horticultural Technician Foundation

Entrance requirements

Recommended for success

Good physical condition is required for success in the Ironworker trade, as well as good hearing.

For more information see:

Information Session:

The BCIT Machinist Foundation or CNC (Computer Numerical Control) Technician programs provide you with the skills you need to start an exciting career in manufacturing. In today’s high-tech world of modern conveniences and instant gratification, many people don’t know how sophisticated and challenging the manufacturing industry has become, even though they use its products every day.

We recommend that trainees in the MST technical training have high school grade 12 math and English, but candidates with grade 10 or higher with trades aptitude will be considered.

For more information see:

This certificate program is suited to individuals with all levels of mechanical experience and prepares students for careers as inboard/outboard marine technicians or motorcycle/outdoor power equipment technicians. Upon successful completion, students receive a VIU Motorcycle & Marine Technician Certificate. Graduates also receive credit from the Industry Training Authority for Level 1 Apprentice Technical Training for Motorcycle and Power Equipment Technician, and Inboard/Outboard Mechanic.The program encompasses theory, practical knowledge, and techniques essential to maintain and repair modern inboard/outboard marine, motorcycle, and other power equipment. Hands-on training with customer products is emphasized. Students are required to spend approximately one month on introductory basic mechanical skills prior to servicing customers’ products.

Admission Requirements

  • Math 11, English 12
  • Students will be required to complete an assessment test.
  • Minimum 16 years of age.

For more information see: Motorcycle & Marine Technician

Classroom instruction is combined with hands-on practical assignments and sophisticated computer-based instruction. On successful completion, students will receive a Vancouver Island University certificate, CFC handling certification from Environment Canada and the Province of British Columbia.

Maturity, good hand/eye coordination and problem solving skills with attention to detail are desirable qualities for individuals pursuing careers in Refrigeration and Air Conditioning. An opportunity for work experience is included in the program.

Admission Requirements

For more information see: Refrigeration Air-Conditioning Mechanic

Classes are limited to 18 students. Graduates of the welding program have found employment in shipyards, fabrication shops, and construction industries. Welder Foundation graduates can continue onto the 12 week Welder Fitter program and receive a Welder Fitter Certificate.

Admission Requirements

  • All students will be required to complete an assessment test.
  • A&W Math 11, English 12

Note on Admission

  • Adequate vision, and free from respiratory ailments.
  • Physically suited to the trade.
  • Applicants who do not possess the minimum educational requirements may have their work experience assessed in lieu of educational requirements.

For more information see: Welder

Program Coordinator

Contact Rob Gowan-Smith for information around Youth TRAIN in Trades.

Phone: 250-754-2447