Graduates of the Wood Manufacturing Council’s (WMC) “Women in Non-Traditional Trades” program found ready employment in Moncton, NB, with nine of the ten  who completed the training joining firms in the area. An update on the program will be presented at the Woodworking Machinery & Supply Conference and Expo in Toronto, Nov. 5  at the International Centre. Presdenter Richard Lipman, president of the Wood Manufacturing Council, detailed the program in this release: 

Local employers in Moncton, NB have shown great interest and confidence in the graduates of the Wood Manufacturing Council’s (WMC) recently completed “Women in Non-Traditional Trades” program. Nine of the ten participants who completed the training now have full time employment with firms in the area, invited to join our celebration for the ladies in non-traditional trades who are ready to begin working in the wood manufacturing sector.

The skills delivery, which took place over 18 weeks, used the WMC’s “Wood Employee Readiness Curriculum” (WERC), which provides a basic introduction to the wood manufacturing industry and includes essential skills training, a basic wood manufacturing (shop) and safety component and a job placement component. The training was delivered by the provincial Workplace Essential Skills team and the woodworking training was delivered by and housed at the New Brunswick Community College. Job placements were made available by kitchen and countertop manufacturers, construction and window and door producers etc.

WERC is a pre-employment skills development program designed to attract individuals from a variety of backgrounds—including Aboriginal, Metis and Inuit Canadians, youth facing barriers to employment, persons with disabilities, women, new Canadians and immigrants working in Canada. It has been designed to introduce individuals to basic requirements and gain an understanding of entry-level occupations and employers’ expectations in the wood manufacturing sector. The ultimate goal of the program is to provide job readiness training for eligible and prospective workers from equity groups, enabling them to begin working with manufacturers upon the completion of the training or to pursue further education.

WERC opens new doors for people who might not otherwise have considered a career in advanced wood manufacturing. The goal is to improve recruitment, training and career development of equity and target groups while meeting the training and labour resource needs of industry. During the development of the program, manufacturers were represented by HR managers from cabinet and millwork firms, who provided specific industry needs and input.

WMC would like to congratulate the graduates and thank the employers for their engagement, for hosting job placements and for their interest in hiring the graduates. We wish to thank our funding partners, the Province of New Brunswick, Post-Secondary Education Training and Labour, and the Government of Canada through their Youth Employment Strategy, whose support made this initiative possible.

Opportunities for future WERC programs are being identified. Established in 2002, the WMC was created to help wood products manufacturers address the human resource challenges they face. For more information please contact: Richard Lipman or Norma Ricker 506 435 1680.
Funded by the Government of Canada and the Province of New Brunswick through the Canada-New Brunswick Labour Market Agreements/ Financé par le gouvernement du Canada et la province du Nouveau-Brunswick dans le cadre des Ententes Canada/Nouveau-Brunswick sur le marché du travail.

At a WMS 2015 Conference presentation, Lipman will provide new data on workforce research. For the past 14 years, Richard Lipman has been president of Canada’s Wood Manufacturing Council. The Council's mandate is to plan, develop and implement human resources strategies that support the long-term growth and competitiveness of Canada's advanced wood products manufacturing industry and meet the developmental needs of its workforce. The Council identifies and examines the necessary skills and knowledge required to respond to changing industry needs. The Council also develops an overall strategic plan to address key issues such as the shortage of skilled workers and the need for national standards for worker competencies. Before that he was vice president of the Tree Canada Foundation, and prior to that assistant eceutive director of the Canadian Lumbermen’s Association. 

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