OTTAWA – “The Government of Canada is pleased to support the First Nations Technical Institute in increasing its capacity while helping to break down some of the barriers currently facing Indigenous peoples in pursuing careers in aviation. This is an excellent time to help enable more candidates to enter this high demand field,” states Marc Garneau, Minister of Transport.
“FedDev Ontario’s support for the expansion of this vital training program is so important. With new and more specialized capabilities, FNTI will be able to offer more Indigenous pilots the chance to join a dynamic and growing sector of the Canadian economy. This will not only bring benefits to communities right across the country, it will also help create good quality jobs for many years to come,” states Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development and Minister responsible for the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario.
Marc Garneau, Minister of Transport, on behalf of the Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development and Minister responsible for FedDev Ontario, announced a Government of Canada investment of up to $4.9 million over three years for the First Nations Technical Institute (FNTI). The FNTI is an Indigenous-owned post-secondary institute offering unique educational opportunities for Indigenous peoples. The First Peoples’ Aviation Technology program at FNTI is the only Indigenous aviation post-secondary program of its kind in Canada.
With this investment, the FNTI will strengthen its aviation training program. It will double the number of Indigenous students training to become commercial pilots, enabling more Indigenous peoples to take advantage of growing economic opportunities in the aviation sector. The Government of Canada investment will support Indigenous students through the purchase of five new training aircraft; hiring additional aircraft maintenance engineers, flight instructors, dispatch staff, academic faculty and student support facilitators; and acquiring innovative safety maintenance software.
“Today’s investment in the First Peoples’ Aviation Technology program is a game-changer, and I share the excitement our friends and neighbours at FNTI as this program continues to grow. Programs like this are critical for the sustainability of Indigenous communities, particularly rural and northern ones, across Canada. The pilots and aviation experts trained by FNTI will have an incredible impact in helping deliver supplies to families, provide emergency support in times of need, and keep the communities reliant on aviation open and accessible when other forms of travel are unfeasible. With FNTI recently experiencing unprecedented student enrolment, particularly among women in the Aviation Technology Program, they are continuing to set themselves apart as leaders across Canada, and I am so proud that they are a fixture of our area,” says Mike Bossio
Member of Parliament for Hastings–Lennox and Addington.
“Through this support, FNTI will be able to create more educational opportunities for Indigenous learners, reduce our waiting list, and ensure pathways for Indigenous graduates into the aviation industry. More students and more graduates will assist with creating sustainability in remote communities across Canada and help increase role models for the next generation of Indigenous pilots in the aviation industry,” states Suzanne Brant, President, First Nations Technical Institute – Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory.
“We greatly appreciate the financial support of the Government of Canada for this project. The Government of Canada’s investment in the First Nations Technical Institute shows that our communities succeed when we work together. Our partnership with Ministers Bains and Garneau is a strong one, and this initiative with FNTI will help increase labour force participation of the Mohawks of the Bay of Quinte community on and off the Territory, and help Indigenous students across Canada, find good, well-paying jobs,” shared Chief R. Donald Maracle -Tyendinaga Mohawk Council.