TalentED YYC, a new online platform to help Calgary employers navigate the engagement of students in their organizations for practical work experiences, is now live.
Through collaboration with post-secondary institutions and orders of government, tools for Calgarians to seize the opportunities here in our city are becoming more readily available. The new platform is the product of Calgary Work Integrated Learning (Calgary WIL), a collaboration of 10 partners led by Calgary Economic Development to build Calgary’s skilled talent pool.
“Calgary WIL is the largest work-integrated learning collaboration in Canada. The TalentED YYC platform will help ready our workforce by connecting students with local employers, enabling them to gain the on-the-job experience they need to jumpstart their careers in Calgary,” said Brad Parry, President and CEO, Calgary Economic Development.
As the operational partner of Calgary WIL, Calgary Economic Development is driving this innovative pilot project forward as a priority for the attraction, retention and development of skilled talent; a key pillar in the economic strategy, Calgary in the New Economy.
Research from Statistics Canada demonstrates that students with WIL experience are more likely to find work in a field related to their education. Employers who offer WIL are more likely to access the talent they need and find strong candidates to join their organization in the future.
“The TalentED YYC platform provides an important avenue for post-secondary students to access the hands-on training and skills they need to thrive in our high-tech economy,” said the Honourable Dan Vandal, Minister for PrairiesCan. “Our partnership with Calgary Economic Development on this innovative initiative will help connect Calgary’s technology sector with a new generation of talented workers to drive the growth and competitiveness of local businesses for years to come.”
“I'm proud to see our government investing in real-life learning opportunities for Calgary’s diverse post-secondary students,” said George Chahal, Member of Parliament for Calgary Skyview. “With their ingenuity and ideas, they are well-equipped to meet the growing demand for talent in our city's technology sector. This investment will help prepare them for rewarding careers and a bright future here in Alberta."
WIL opportunities offer relevant experiences for skills development specifically related to a student’s program of study. Placements include internships, co-ops, practicums, community service learning opportunities, field placements and projects.
Currently, employers offering student positions need to navigate each school and program individually. The new TalentED YYC platform offers resources, templates and a centralized job posting portal to share WIL opportunities with students at all seven post-secondary institutions in Calgary. It also offers access to a team who can provide one-on-one support to help employers navigate how to work with student talent.
The Calgary WIL pilot project kicked off in 2022. Today, the Government of Canada, through PrairiesCan, announced an investment of $1.2 million into Calgary WIL. This funding builds on previous funding of $2.9 million from Future Skills Centre and $2.5 million from the Government of Alberta’s Ministry of Advanced Education.
The pilot project is set to run until Spring 2025 and will continue to evolve with more programs and services to expand WIL opportunities in Calgary. Pilot partners include Ambrose University, AU Arts, Bow Valley College, Mount Royal University, SAIT, St. Mary’s University, the University of Calgary, the Calgary Chamber of Commerce, the Calgary Chamber of Voluntary Organizations and Calgary Economic Development.
The new platform for employers can be found at www.talentedyyc.com.