Building Careers is a collaboration between the Residential Construction Council of Ontario (RESCON), Ontario Residential Council of Construction Associations (ORCCA), and Humber College’s School of Applied Technology and Centre for Trades & Technology. The Job Seeker module was designed to help recent graduates, and more generally job seekers in the construction industry, learn more about select residential trades and basic health and safety. The Employer module was created to help support small and medium size residential construction firms when recruiting and retaining employees. The project brings together stakeholders in both industry and education to improve the participation and experience of new hires in the residential construction industry.
This project was made possible through the Career Ready Fund, an initiative of the Ontario Ministry of Training, Colleges & Universities, which assists “colleges and universities, employers and other organizations create experiential learning opportunities for postsecondary students and recent grads.” While one goal of this project was to increase the participation of recent grads from Humber’s Centre for Trades & Technology, the modules content and website design were developed in large part, by students and recent graduates from Humber’s Business School and Humbers’ School of Media Studies & Information Technology.
Building Careers are open license modules, and may be used by other parties for career clarity and informational purposes.
The purpose of this project is to increase internship and entry-level opportunities in the residential construction and skilled trades programs. The overall goals of this project are to help sustain labour supply, while filling the missing link and bridging the communications gap within the industry. The intention is to bring together stakeholders in both education and employment to improve the experience of new hires in the industry, while developing new hire’s employability skills. The pilot of this project focuses on transitioning and clarifying career goals, in order to support residential construction companies when attracting and retaining employees.
This project includes three distinct parts:
This project was made possible through the Career Ready Fund, which assists “publicly-assisted colleges and universities, employers and other organizations create experiential learning opportunities for postsecondary students and recent grads.” The Career Ready Fund was launched by the Ministry of Advanced Education and Skilled Development, now known as the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities.
Online Learning Modules
Two online learning modules were created – the first, for recent graduates and job seekers, and the second, for employers and front line supervisors in the residential construction industry. These materials will be piloted with the graduates from various Humber College Skilled Trades programs, along with employers in the field of residential construction. The Building Careers Together Job Seeker module is intended to provide recent graduates, and more generally, job seekers in the construction industry, with information about select residential trades, as well as information about worker rights and how workers can stay safe on the job. The Employer module is intended to help front-line supervisors in the residential construction industry, employee onboarding, training and retention, as well as inform Human Resources and Hiring Professionals with recruitment and retention. The Building Careers modules are open license, meaning they can be used by anyone for educational and training purposes. Each respective module provides a more in-depth overview of the contents.
Competency-Based Resume/Portfolio Process for Job Seekers
Students from various Humber College Skilled Trades programs were invited to participate in this pilot project and apply for internship opportunities. Pre-internship activities included working with Humber Placement Advisors in the development of competency-based resumes and cover letters, as well as the development of a portfolio showcasing student skills and what they can do.
Opportunities for Students and Recent Graduates
The initial phase of the project provided employment to students in the Human Resources, Multi-Media Design and Web Development programs at Humber College. A total of 8 positions were made available to students and recent graduates, giving them the opportunity to take part in creating the modules, while also gaining work experience and building their own personal work portfolios.
The RESCON-Humber Graduate Skilled Trades “pilot” internship program relied heavily on the cooperation and contribution from employer partners within the Ontario Residential Construction Council of Construction Associations. Students and recent graduates from Skilled Trades programs were invited to participate in internship preparatory activities. Pre-internship activities included, construction site tours, completing the online module, interview preparation, resume and cover letter writing and feedback, and networking events with employer partners. Initial internship opportunities were scheduled to begin in September 2018. The goal of the internships are for graduates to “get their foot in the door” and get practical, hands-on experience in residential construction that will lead them into long-lasting careers in the residential construction industry.
A number of organizations came together to make this project a success: Residential construction employers; Residential construction industry associations; Students, graduates, faculty, staff and work placement advisors from Humber College’s School of Applied Technology, School of Media Studies and Information Technology, and The Business School; and, The Residential Construction Council of Ontario (RESCON).
The Residential Construction Council of Ontario is a residential construction industry council which represents Ontario builders of new low, mid and high-rise homes who provide direct and indirect employment for approximately 50,000 of Ontario’s construction workers through its engagement with the Ontario Residential Council of Construction Associations (ORCCA).
The Ontario Residential Council of Construction Associations (ORCCA) is a council of 17 employer associations who are designated employer bargaining agencies in the residential sector of the construction industry. Its membership is restricted to residential employer bargaining agencies regardless of union affiliation. ORCCA is critical to the interests of all residential sector associations of the construction industry and provides the managers of the various associations to gather and share information about issues affecting the industry. Participating ORCCA association members include: The Residential Framing Contractors Association; Ontario Formwork Association; Residential Tile Contractors Association; Trim Association of Ontario; Ontario Concrete and Drain Contractors Association; and, The Greater Toronto Railings Association.
Established in 1967, Humber College is a global leader in polytechnic education. Combining in-depth theoretical learning and hands-on experience with applied research and extensive industry connections, Humber provides career-focused education to 31,000 full-time and 23,000 part-time students across three campuses. The college offers a comprehensive range of credentials including honours undergraduate degrees, postgraduate certificates, diplomas, apprenticeships and certificates. More than four out of five Humber graduates are employed within six months of completing their studies.
The School of Applied Technology offers comprehensive programs in design, advanced manufacturing, engineering technologies and skilled trades. With over 37 programs offered across a span of applied technology industries the School prepares students for careers of the future. Academic theory blended with applied learning provides a strong educational foundation, while state-of-the-art facilities, capstone projects, work placements, applied research opportunities, and apprenticeships provide experiential learning in the classroom and in industry. Students graduate with the critical-thinking and hands-on skills that will launch their careers in traditional and emerging careers.