TalentED YYC creates hundreds of WIL opportunities in first pilot year

April 24, 2024
New Economy Talent
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Finding post-secondary student talent in Calgary has never been easier. 

As TalentED YYC celebrates its one-year anniversary, the pilot project continues to streamline the process for Calgary employers to access funding and hire students. 

Since its official launch in April 2023, the TalentED YYC project has facilitated over 890 work integrated learning (WIL) opportunities for students and supported over 160 local employers. 

Initiatives like TalentED YYC are strengthening the city’s talent pool through future-focused learning opportunities, a priority in the community’s economic strategy. 

TalentED YYC reduces barriers for employers hiring student talent 

TalentED YYC helps businesses develop curated student opportunities and secure funding for the roles.

TalentED YYC team

With a network of over 20 funding delivery partners, the TalentED YYC Employer Engagement team connects employers with possible grants, bursaries and subsidies. 

Pedesting, a made-in-Calgary app that helps pedestrians find the easiest, safest and most accessible routes across the city, is among the over 160 local employers engaged. 

Last year, Pedesting hired two students through the TalentED YYC platform – a communications specialist and a video and content lead. 

The TalentED YYC team helped Pedesting create job descriptions, post them on the online portal and identify a funding source. 

“Within two weeks, we were approved for funding. The whole process came together really quickly and seamlessly,” said Nabeel Ramji, CEO and Co-founder of Pedesting. 

“In the beginning, I was skeptical because I didn’t want to use resources on a temporary position – but you’d be surprised at the collaboration and new ideas that come from post-secondary students. A fresh perspective is worthwhile and can be quite refreshing. It changes how you view things.” 

Josephine Mary, Pedesting Communications and Collaboration Lead, echoed that the response of TalentED YYC was very swift whenever they needed help - saving time and resources. 

The students assisted Pedesting in capturing and promoting content, amplifying their story and ensuring a cohesive brand across various platforms. 

“The student community is bustling with new ideas, creativity and different perspectives. It's always a good idea to tap into student talent in Calgary,” said Mary. 

Pedesting hired one of the students full time as their Content Lead and Multimedia Producer and plans to hire another student to help with user engagement on the app in the summer. 

Online portal streamlines post-secondary student talent pool for employers 

A unique component of the project is its online platform that offers funding resources, human resources templates and a centralized job posting portal.

Through the portal, employers can post an opportunity that can be shared with students at all seven Calgary post-secondary institutions. 

“In the last year, the addition of TalentED YYC to the Calgary Work Integrated Learning (WIL) landscape has enabled more employers to explore the benefit of adding student talent to their workforce,” said Lara Schuelke, Work Integrated Learning Specialist, SAIT. 

“Students bring innovative thinking, diversity and energy with them to the job every day, and TalentED YYC has helped us to give more employers access to students’ potential.” 

Through TalentED YYC, employers can post traditional student work opportunities, including co-ops, internships and community service learning. TalentED YYC also facilitates student learning through innovative WIL opportunities like boot camps, hackathons and more.  

“TalentED YYC has been a beacon of opportunity, illuminating the path to my career aspirations. The connections I’ve made and the confidence I’ve gained have been pivotal in my job search and professional growth,” said Jigar Kanjani, Supply Chain Management & Data Science Student, SAIT, and TalentED YYC Innovative Work Integrated Learning Student. 

“As I look back on the past year, I am grateful for the impact TalentED YYC has had on my journey.” 

TalentED YYC is part of a pilot project championed by Calgary Economic Development and supported by nine additional community partners. Pilot partners include Alberta University of the Arts, Ambrose University, Bow Valley College, Mount Royal University, St. Mary’s University, SAIT, the University of Calgary, the Calgary Chamber of Commerce, the Calgary Chamber of Voluntary Organizations and Calgary Economic Development.

It will run as a pilot from 2022 to 2025 and is the largest collaboration of its kind in Canada. 

Visit TalentEDYYC.com to find a summer student for your organization or to learn more about how you can connect with post-secondary student talent in Calgary. 

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