Earning Credits & Exploring Careers Options

Ms. Gordon has a page with information about Train in Trades (formerly ACE-IT), Work in Trades (formerly Secondary School Apprenticeship), and Work Experience.


TRAIN IN TRADES (formerly known as ACE-IT)  is a partnership between Vancouver Island University and School District 46. Students may earn grade 12 elective credits while at the same time getting certification in their area of interest. The three programs we have had on the coast are Culinary Arts, Carpentry, and Auto Service Technician. The Culinary Arts program has been running first semester at Elphinstone Secondary School.  The Carpentry programs run from Feb. to June. The Auto Service Technician program is at Chatelech Secondary School half days for the full school year, but it does not run every year.  Doing a TRAIN IN TRADES program is an excellent way to get some real-world training while still at high school.

WORK IN TRADES (formerly known as Secondary School Apprenticeship) & Work Experience – Students may earn credit for either of these courses. See counsellors for information.

Trades – Trades include a wide area of professions (carpentry, metal work, electrical, plumbing, culinary arts, hair, pipefitting, welding etc.).

To get into electrical, welding etc., you must work as an apprentice for a set number of hours. You and your employer register with the ITA – Industry Training Authority – http://youth.itabc.ca & https://www.itabc.ca As well as work experience, apprentices do course work.

Admission to trades programs is often based on specific courses with C to C+ marks required. There are often wait lists.

Many schools offer interesting programs. For example, BCIT offers electrical, sheet metal, food technology, boilermaker, machinist, computer hardware, aerospace, and the discover trades programs, to name a few.  Many programs are first come, first served. Many applications open Oct. 1. Vancouver Community College offers Culinary Arts, Auto Collision Repair, Baking, Commercial Transport Vehicle Mechanic, & Heavy Duty Mechanic. Camosun College offers Carpentry Foundation, Horticulture Technician, Plumbing, Pipes and Refrigeration Trades, and Welding. Other schools include Capilano U, Kwantlen U, Selkirk College, Vancouver Island University, and Okanagan College to name a few. Use the search engines below to help you find the right school for you. Check admission requirements to ensure you have the courses and marks that you need.

Trades training BC is an excellent website for more information: www.tradestrainingbc.ca. Also, the ITA site above has a list of apprenticeable trades in BC: http://www.itabc.ca/discover-apprenticeship-programs/search-programs. Another good resource with lots of trades information is http://www.discovertradesbc.ca/. See the “grads” page for some other options, such as education planner, workbc, career cruising, or school finder.

In addition, here are some other things you can do if you’re interested in the trades: try to make connections locally, take a work experience block or a secondary school apprenticeship, take courses at Elphi that are related to the trades you wish to go into.