Edible Garden
Edible garden project at OC’s Penticton campus to feed students, community members

June 29, 2021

A partnership between Okanagan College's Penticton campus and the Medical Arts Research Group is helping to root out food insecurity amongst students and local families. An edible garden program is being established on the north end of the Penticton campus, with the aim to provide fresh vegetables to OC students and food bank patrons in the community. Medical Arts Research Group donated the wood and fence material for the project. Raised garden beds were built in May by students in the Women in Trades Training program, and installed outside...

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Home Depot delivers tools
Women in Trades Training program gets a helpful boost

February 16, 2021

When Home Depot employee and OC Women in Trades Training (WITT) student Hannah Greene began showcasing new confidence and skills in her job, her manager Steve Ngui took notice. After hearing about OC’s Gateway to the Building Trades for Women program that Greene is enrolled in, Ngui and Home Depot decided to support the program by way of a generous tool donation. On Jan. 29, Home Depot gifted the program with a large selection of brand-new tools to help train students in the five trades the program features – plumbing, electrical, automotiv...

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Plumbing and Pipefitting instructor Cemone Bredeson takes a break in the shop by a laptop
Meet Cemone Bredeson, Plumbing and Pipefitting instructor

November 25, 2020

Q: What is your education and background? A: I completed my trades training at BCIT to obtain my Red Seal certificate in the steamfitting and pipefitting trade.  I’ve got a B Gas ticket for the Province of British Columbia. I’m also Red Seal-certified in Plumbing and am currently working on obtaining my Provincial Instructors Diploma at VCC. Q: What is your area of interest? A: I am intrigued by how the brain works to process information. I want to know more about how people learn,...

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Women in Trades Training Info Session

October 5, 2020

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OC Women in Trades and Willowstone Academy student at the maker event
Making mentors: OC Women in Trades and Willowstone Academy students learn and build together

March 6, 2020

Sometimes a finished carpentry project turns out to be far more than the sum of its parts, when the tools, techniques and materials combine to create something unforgettable and transformative. The same goes for educational experiences, as demonstrated by a recent event that brought together students from Willowstone Academy and Okanagan College’s Women in Trades Training (WITT) program, with support from the Industry Training Authority (ITA). On Thursday, March 5 a class of WITT students arrived in the early hours of the morning to prep fo...

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Women in Trades Training

Okanagan College is among B.C.’s largest trades training institutions and has a reputation for excellence. The Industry Training Authority acknowledges the need for more female apprentices in the Province of BC.  Through funding provided by the Canada-British Columbia Workforce Development Agreement, Okanagan College is able to provide sponsorship for trades training to eligible and selected women who are interested in a career in the trades.

Women in Trades Training opportunities

Gateway to the Building Trades for Women

This all-female, 12-week exploratory program introduces women to a variety of trades, safety training, job readiness skills and professional development through a combination of in-class and in-shop experiences. By actively participating in exploring many different trades, women gain the confidence to pursue their career goals in trades. Trades that participants will experience include: Carpentry, Joinery, Sheet Metal, Plumbing, Electrical and more. Program times: Monday - Friday, 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Times may vary based on shop time, online study and self-study needs.

Next intakes

  • Vernon: Sept. 20, 2021
  • Kelowna: Jan. 2022 and Mar. 2022, date TDB
  • Salmon Arm: Sept. 2022, date TBD

Trades Training Foundation

In as little as five months, foundation training prepares students to enter the labour market with credit for Level 1 technical training in their chosen trade. Students entering trades foundation training must have accepted a seat offer in the program of their choice and have paid their seat deposit prior to starting an application for sponsorship with Women in Trades Training. To learn more about applying for sponsorship, contact Women in Trades Training at witt@okanagan.bc.ca.

Step into Steel-toes for Women

Learn valuable skills for home use or to prepare for a career in trades. Trades that participate are: Carpentry, Joinery, Automotive, Plumbing and Electrical.

Program details and benefits

  • Get hands-on experience with tools and materials from five Red Seal endorsed trades
  • Receive shop safety training
  • Work full time while learning new skills
  • Build confidence in a comfortable all-female cohort
  • You could be working in the trades in as little as six weeks

Dates

TBD
6 weeks (week 1 online)
Tuesday and Thursday 6 - 9 p.m.
Saturday or Sunday 8 a.m. - 3 p.m.
Kelowna Campus

Cost

$1,595.00 + GST (materials included).
Participants must supply their own PPE including steel-toe boots.

Apply

Email witt@okanagan.bc.ca to apply.

Female students working in the Carpentry shop

Youth Programs

In the spring and summer, girls ages 9-12 have an opportunity to explore trades. Youth programs are one-week in length and focus on fostering a passion for trades while developing new skills. Note: due to COVID-19, Camp OC was suspended for 2020 - but stay tuned for opportunities in 2021!

Check out Camp OC offerings

Getting Started

Admission requirements

All participants must meet the following requirements to be eligible:

  • legally entitled to work in Canada
  • living in BC
  • not enrolled in high school or in post-secondary training
  • not actively participating in another provincially or federally funded labour market program
  • unemployed or employed and working equal to, or less than 20 hours per week
  • complete Women In Trades Training application process 

Applications

Gateway program applications start with a completed Participant Eligibility Worksheet. This document can be emailed directly to witt@okanagan.bc.ca or delivered in person to the Women in Trades Training office located in the Trades and Apprenticeship Office T115, Kelowna campus.

Have questions?

The Women in Trades Training Department is here to help. Call 1-877-755-2266, ext. 4825 toll-free or submit your questions below.

Funding for the Women in Trades Training programs is provided by the Government of Canada through the Canada-British Columbia Workforce Development Agreement.

Experience

Join a virtual info session or become a student for a day. 

Ask

Have your questions answered by a Trades and Apprenticeship staff member.

Apply

Applying to the Women in Trades Training program involves completing a participant worksheet.

Penticton Welding Centre
College powers up new welding building in Penticton

August 20, 2018

Welders training in the South Okanagan now have a state-of-the-art new shop in which to spark their torches and test their metal. Okanagan College officials, students, industry partners and community members gathered at the Penticton campus today to mark the opening of the College’s new $2.2-million, 465-square-metre (5,000 square ft.), welding facility. Among them was a class of 16 Welder Foundation students, who, under the tutelage of instructor Mark Stathers, will be the first to train in the facility. The shop they’ll soon step into is ...

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Dignitaries and students cut the ribbon to open the Vernon Trades Training Centre
College opens new Trades Training Centre in Vernon

August 7, 2018

A class of Plumbing and Piping Foundation trades students were the first to step through the doors of the newly completed Trades Training Centre at Okanagan College’s Vernon campus at 7 a.m. this morning. A few hours later, they helped to officially open the space where they will hone their trade.  Stephen Fuhr, Member of Parliament for Kelowna - Lake Country and The Hon. Melanie Mark, Minister of Advanced Education, Skills and Training joined Okanagan College President Jim Hamilton and other College officials, donors, industry and communit...

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