The search has begun for exceptional employers


Bill MauroTHUNDER BAY – The search has begun for exceptional employers in Northwestern Ontario who are helping to build tomorrow’s skilled workforce by training new apprentices. Nominations for the 2011 Minister’s Awards for Apprenticeship Training are now open. The awards celebrate and encourage companies that support the apprenticeship training system, show leadership in training apprentices, and promote careers in the skilled trades.

Bill Mauro, the MPP for Atikokan states, “Northwestern Ontario needs skilled people who are prepared for the economic opportunities ahead, and we have many employers that we can be proud of. Every employer that takes the time to train a new apprentice is helping to build a better future – for each individual, and for our community.”

Last year, a Thunder Bay business was among the four province-wide award recipients. Michael’s Hair Design and Day Spa was recognized for partnering with high schools on the co-op education program and with local training partners. Michael’s employs a unique pay-back program where apprentices can be paid back their tuition and training costs over time as they continue with the company. Since 1983, more than 20 apprentices have been trained at the local business.

For more information on this year’s awards and how to nominate an employer in your community, visit Nominations are

being accepted until March 25, 2011.

“Skills training and apprenticeship opportunities are so essential to strengthening our economy here in the North, because the availability of skilled labour is a key factor in attracting and retaining new businesses to our communities. I applaud every single company in Northwestern Ontario that has opened its doors to training apprentices, and I hope to see many, many local companies nominated for this year’s awards,” enthused Michael Gravelle, MPP Thunder Bay-Superior North.

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