Trades Career

Trades Career

Adult Academic and Career Preparation Skills Assessments are offered at all Okanagan College Campuses.

We will help you develop the reading,
writing and math skills you need to succeed.

Quick Facts:

Okanagan College is the largest trades school outside of the Lower Mainland. Skilled tradespeople are exactly that – skilled. This line of work requires individuals who have:
  • a strong academic foundation of literacy
  • mathematical and analytical skills
  • creativity and passion
  • problem-solving skills
  • good coordination
  • technological savvy
Types of Jobs
There are over 200 skilled trades in Canada within four major sectors:
  • Transportation: aviation technicians, automotive painters, fuel/electrical systems technicians, and automotive service technicians
  • Construction: heavy equipment operators, electricians, welders, carpenters, painters/decorators, and plumbers
  • Service: chefs, horticulturalists, and florists
  • Manufacturing: industrial electricians, tool and die makers, water well drillers, and precision metal fabricators
Pay
Overall, tradespeople earn 3.1% more than the average Canadian and some make significantly more money. For example, machinists take home 6% above the average Canadian wage; electricians earn 16.5% more; and tool and die makers gross 23% over the median salary.
Travel
There are currently 45 trades that have cross-country standards and certifications, which allows tradespeople to work anywhere in the country without needing additional provincial qualifications. 80% of all tradespeople are currently working within these guidelines. This system, called Red Seal, provides workers with flexibility around where they want to work and live.
Opportunities
According to the Conference Board of Canada, by 2020 it is estimated that Canada will be short a total of one million workers. The opportunities for skilled tradespeople are immense. An aging population and lower birth rates are increasing the demand for these careers. Some economic leaders are predicting that in just five year plumbers, for example, will be as in-demand as computer professionals were in the 1990s.

Start Your Carrer

Aerospace

Aircraft Maintenance Engineer M License
(62 weeks)
English 080, Mathematics 011 and Physics 011 (minimum grade of 67% in all subjects).
Aircraft Maintenance Engineer Category ‘S’
(37 weeks)
English 080, Mathematics 011
*High School graduation is not required (see below).
www.okanagan.bc.ca/calendar
www.okanagan.bc.ca/ame
 

Collision Repair

Collision Repair Technician Certificate
(41 weeks)
Automotive Refinishing Prep Technician
(22 weeks)
English 070, Mathematics 071 and 072
*High School graduation is not required (see below).
www.okanagan.bc.ca/collisionrepair
 

Construction Trades

Carpentry/Joinery
(30 weeks)
Residential Construction
(30 weeks)
English 070, Mathematics 011 or Introductory Algebra 011 (minimum 63% grade) or Math 84/85
Studio Woodworking
(35 weeks)
English 070, Mathematics 071 and 072
*High School graduation is not required (see below).
www.okanagan.bc.ca/carpentry
www.okanagan.bc.ca/studiowoodworking
 

Culinary Arts

Culinary Arts
(40 weeks)
English 070, Mathematics 071 and 072
Pastry Arts
(40 weeks) English 070, Mathematics 071 and 072
Culinary Management Diploma
(2 years)
English 012 (minimum 60% grade) and Mathematics 011 or Introductory Algebra 011 (minimum 70% grade)
*High School graduation is not required (see below).
www.okanagan.bc.ca/culinary
 

Electrical Building Trades

Electrician Pre-Apprenticeship
(24 weeks)
English 012, Mathematics 011
*High School graduation is not required (see below).
www.okanagan.bc.ca/electrical
 

Trades Teacher

Trades Technology Teacher Education diploma program
(2 years)
English 012 (minimum 60% grade), Mathematics 011 or Introductory Algebra 011 (minimum 60% grade), one Science 011 course (minimum 60% grade).
*High School graduation is not required (see below).
There are other requirements for this program.
Please see the online calendar at www.okanagan.bc.ca/calendar for more information.
 

Mechanical Building Trades

Plumbing & Piping Trades Certificate
(25 weeks)
Refrigeration & Air Conditioning Mechanic Pre-Apprenticeship Certificate
(25 weeks)
Sheet Metal Worker Foundation Certificate
(20 weeks)
English 070, Mathematics 071 and 072 B.C. secondary school graduation, or equivalent, or 19 years of age and out of secondary school for at least one year prior to the start of classes.
www.okanagan.bc.ca/mbt
 

Motor Vehicle Trades

Automotive Service Technician
(30 weeks)
Heavy Mechanical Foundation
(38 weeks)
Recreation Vehicle Service Technician
(28 weeks)
English 070, Mathematics 011 or Introductory Algebra 011
*High School graduation is not required (see below).
www.okanagan.bc.ca/mvt
 

Welding

Metal Fabricator
(23 weeks)
Welding Foundation
(28 weeks)
English 070, Mathematics 011 or Introductory Algebra 011
High School graduation is not required if you are 19 years of age.
www.okanagan.bc.ca/metalfab
 

Start Your Carrer *High school graduation is not required if you are 19 years of age or over and have been out of secondary school for one year.

Trades Career

Contact Us

Penticton
Nancy Noble-Hearle:
Kelowna
Steve Smith:
Vernon
Natasha Hansen:
Salmon Arm
Tracy Riley:
Revelstoke
Sarra Dupuis: