Camosun Coastal Centre Celebrates Student Success with Marine Industry Training
Sixteen Indigenous students have recently graduated from the Ship Repair Entry Level Training Program (SRELT), a collaborative marine industry training program, at the Camosun Coastal Centre on Songhees Nation Territory.
Immediately following the completion of the program, over half of the class obtained jobs in shipyards and more have received job offers.
The SRELT course was delivered as part of the Aboriginal Marine Training and Employment Partnership (AMTEP), and was run by the Coast Salish Employment and Training Society (CSETS) in partnership with the Aboriginal Community Career Employment Services Society (ACCESS).
“The goal of the AMTEP program is to provide Aboriginal people with certified training leading to employment and with the partnerships in place we were able to succeed in meeting the employment goals,” says Reg Gladstone, AMTEP Officer for CSETS.
The SRELT program provides industry standard, entry-level training for people to enter careers in the marine industry. Students learn the skills necessary to work in industry, including safety, environmental awareness, and problem-solving skills specific to marine sector situations. They also acquire industry-recognized certifications.
“This course has given me the tools I need to move forward and build a career in the marine industry,” says Tommy Paul, Tsartlip First Nation.
“Before this program I didn’t know anything about ships,” says Anter Elliott, Tsawout First Nation. “Now I feel like I’m comfortable in shipyards and I’m excited to work in one.”
Hands-on learning and industry immersion were key components of the three-month training. The program was heavily supported by the local shipbuilding and repair industry. Seaspan Victoria Shipyards, the Fleet Maintenance Facility (FMF) Cape Breton, and Point Hope Shipyards all provided a variety of facility tours, guest speakers, work experience, and even jobs for graduates.
“Through this program I obtained employment at a shipyard,” says Nick Albany, Songhees First Nation. “As soon as I was accepted in the program I did everything I could to succeed. Now I have a career.”
“The strong partnership between the Camosun Coastal Centre, CSETS and industry has proven to be invaluable when it comes to training and linking indigenous students with employment opportunities,” says Michelle Traore, Manager of Operations at the Camosun Coastal Centre. “Students are obtaining life changing careers, this is what CCC was built to do.”