Winter 2014 e-newsletter

In This Issue
Skills Canada In The News
Skills Canada News
Upcoming Events
Industry News and Stories
Interesting People in the Trade and Technology Sectors

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Message from the CEO

National Skilled Trades & Technology Week (NSTTW) 2014 was a great success with outstanding participation at the launch and strong media coverage nationwide due to the contribution of all Member Organizations who orchestrated quality events in their provinces and territories. In Ottawa over 300 students attended the launch at Algonquin College where 16 partners provided hands-on Try-a-Trade� and Technology activities. The national secretariat would like to formally acknowledge the assistance provided by Skills Ontario in achieving such high student attendance numbers.


The Operations Committee, National Board of Directors and National Technical Committee came together at the end of October, in Saskatoon, in preparation for the 21st Skills Canada National Competition to be held May 27-30th, 2015 in Saskatchewan. The Board members set aside time while in Saskatchewan for a very engaged strategic planning session of which details will be shared in the new year.


With the WorldSkills Canadian Trials fast approaching the national secretariat is organizing the next steps for the trial winners. Skills Canada looks forward to officially announcing and celebrating the appointment of the WorldSkills Team Canada 2015 competitors, in Ottawa, in March 2015, as they ready themselves to compete at the 43rd WorldSkills Competition in So Paulo, Brazil, in August of 2015.


Shaun Thorson
Chief Executive Officer

Skills Canada In the News 


Through its public relations efforts, Skills/Comp�tences Canada (SCC) received great media coverage from National Skilled Trades and Technology Week for both the national secretariat NSTTW launch and for activities hosted by member organizations across the country.


Here are a few items from our recent national media coverage:


Read the article: Array of Trades Surprises Students featured in Metroland on November 13th, 2014.


Read the article: Skilled Trades and Technologies Week Set, in Star Phoenix, on November 4th, 2014.

Read the article: Mike Holmes Jr. & Chef Korecki rise to the challenge at National Skilled Trades & Technology Launch, on November 5th, 2014, in Digital Journal.

Read the article: Industry Voices - Mapping a path to change, on October 30th, 2014, in Journal of Commerce.


Read the article: National Skilled Trades and Technology Week 2014 Kicks Off, on November 4th, 2014, in Manufacturing Automation.


Read the article: Course de bateaux de carton � Edmonton, on November 3rd, on ICI Radio-Canada. 

Read the article: Skills Canada Competition highlights importance of numeracy, on November 12, 2014, in Daily Commercial News.

View this clip:
Shaun Thorson, CEO of SCC & Jonathan Korecki of SideDoor Kitchen raised skilled trades & technology awareness through their interview on Roger's Daytime TV. *Please note that to view this clip, you must be a member of Roger's.

From left to right: Shaun Thorson, CEO of SCC, Chef Jonathan Korecki, Executive Chef at Sidedoor Restaurant, in Ottawa, and Derick Fage, Co-host and Associate Producer of Daytime on Rogers TV.

And here are some news clips featuring Skills Canada and it's programs:

Watch this clip: The Canadian Association for Petroleum Producers (CAPP), the SCNC 2014 Presenting Sponsor, produced this television commercial, which features the Skills Canada National Competition.

Watch this clip: Skills Canada's CEO, Shaun Thorson, talks about the impact of the essential skills in the skilled trades.

Click here to read an interesting article featuring Mike Holmes, SCC's official spokesperson.
Skills Canada News

NSTTW 2014 Delights Students with an Array of Trades & Technologies


Across Canada, events were held to promote skilled trades and technology careers to youth, with an emphasis on the importance of numeracy, as one of the 9 essential skills, in a young person's career path. Skills Canada's Member Organizations hosted many hands-on activities and in-school presentations throughout the week.



Skills Canada took part in a special launch event at Algonquin College, in the National Capital Region, where over 300 high school students, their teachers, Algonquin faculty, industry leaders and the media gathered to discuss the opportunities that exist in the skilled trades and technology sectors. Special guests, including Mike Holmes Junior, star of the hit shows Holmes Makes it Right and Mike's Ultimate Garage, on HGTV and Chef Jonathan Korecki, Executive Chef, SideDoor Contemporary Kitchen and Bar & Restaurant 18 and former contestant on Top Chef Canada, were also present to help launch this special week of activities.

A contest was held for participating students at the launch whereby they completed a checklist listing the 16 Try-A-Trade and Technology activities and labs, and identified the numeracy skills represented in each activity. A random draw was held following the event and the lucky winner of an iPad mini was Shaunassey Viero from Merivale High School, who is featured in the picture on the left, with her teacher. Congratulations!


SCC would like to thank the many Member Organizations that hosted events and everyone who participated in the launch. SCC extends a special thank you to Skills Canada Ontario for their outreach to schools resulting in such high participation. This week allows SCC to bring careers in the skilled trades and technology to the forefront for the participating students across Canada.


View NSTTW launch event pictures taken on November 4th at Algonquin College.

Upcoming Events

The 2015 Skills Canada National Competition


Be a part of the action in 2015 and connect with tomorrow's labour force! Sponsorship opportunities are available by contacting Gail Vent at   

New Team Canada Selection Process



Skills Canada recently announced the names of the 32 young men and women who will participate in the WorldSkills Canadian Trials taking place throughout Canada in January and February 2015. The selection is based on the highest ranked age eligible medalist in each applicable contest area from the 2014 Skills Canada National Competition (SCNC), held last June, in Toronto.  


At the upcoming WorldSkills Canadian Trials, competitors reaching pre-established Canadian standards will be named to WorldSkills Team Canada 2015 and will participate in the 43rd WorldSkills Competition, in S�o Paulo, in August 2015. The WorldSkills Canadian Trials represent a new step in the Team Canada selection process. Read more and see the list of competitors participating at the WorldSkills Canadian Trials.


Skills Canada will issue a press release on March 5th, 2015, to officially announce the WorldSkills Team Canada 2015 Members. Stay tuned for more information.


WorldSkills S�o Paulo 2015  


The Largest Professional Education Event


Held every two years, the WorldSkills Competition is the largest professional education event in the world. Competitors from over 60 countries and regions in the Americas, Europe, Asia, South Pacific and Africa simulate the challenges of real professions that must be met in accordance with international quality standards. They demonstrate individual and collective technical skills in performing specific tasks for each of the professional skills competition.


The next WorldSkills Competition will be held in São Paulo, Brazil, from August 11-16, 2015, at the Anhembi Park. More than 1,000 competitors, 1,000 experts, 3,000 volunteers and over 200,000 visitors will participate in this exciting event. At WorldSkills S�o Paulo, only the world's most skilled young people will be competing in over 45 disciplines.  


To watch the promo video. 

For more information, visit

Industry News and Stories

What is a "Green" Plumber?


Contributed by: UA


Many people take the clean water they drink every day for granted. We can't live without clean water very long and the supply of clean uncontaminated water for our society is a huge responsibility for municipalities and provinces and in most cases it is taken care of very well. Plumbers are taken for granted as well, but they are actually the "water police" for our nation's water and sewage systems because they are trained in how to install these systems so that the water and the sewer do not get together and make us sick or worse. This still happens in some areas of the country where checks and balances are not maintained, and especially where plumbers are not consulted on changes in the water system. To read more. 

Consulab Partners with Skills Canada


Contributed by: Consulab 


ConsuLab has been a strong supporter of Skills Canada at both the provincial level and at the national level. We provide assistance through our educational training aids, offering them in competitions and even volunteering our staff's time in support of SCC.


Our training aids are well suited for these competitions due to the simple set up and portability. ConsuLab educational training aids are made by skilled craftspeople that take pride in their work, which is another reason we, as a company, support the trades so much! ConsuLab's vision and principles align so well with that of SCC. To read more. 
Interesting People in Trade and Technology Sectors
Skills Canada Welcomes New President

Skills Canada is pleased to announce that John Oates was elected as the new President of Skills Canada on October 24th. John has had a long history with the skills movement in Canada and is eagerly looking forward to his new role, leading Skills Canada into the future. He has dedicated the next four years to continuing his advocacy role in highlighting the important roles played by skilled tradespersons and technologists in making Canada a truly great country. To read his full biography


Skills Canada would also like to thank Donavon Elliott, Past President, for all of his work and dedication in bringing the skills movement into the forefront. SCC wishes him the best in his future endeavours.

Where are they now?


In this new feature we check in with Team Canada (TC) alumni to see how the skills competitions influenced their career path. If you are a TC  

alumni and would like to share your story, please email


Caroline Faucher's Profile


Name: Caroline Faucher

Field of specialization:

Graphic design 

What year did you participate in the WorldSkills Competition?  

In 2005, at Helsinki


Where are you in your career path?  

For the past five years, I have been working for EXFO as a graphic designer. EXFO is one of the largest suppliers of test solutions to operators and manufacturers of wired and wireless network equipment for the international telecommunications industry. We have our own internal communications-marketing department. Previously, I worked for three years for a marketing agency, Image de Mark, as a contractor for Hotel Le Bonne Entente. I also do layout for the Quebec municipal recreation association magazine, Agora Forum. I am now working on my 21st issue.


In what way did your participation in the WorldSkills Competition change your career or your life?   


It gave me much greater visibility at my first employer, Image de Mark. Surprisingly, I have never had a job interview. I am now recognized as a graphic designer even though I only have a secondary school vocational diploma in graphic design.

Recipe for Delicious Skor Bars from an SCC Alumni 


Contributed by: Skills/Comp�tences Canada Ontario



24 regular salted soda crackers       

1 cup butter

1 cup brown sugar                            

1 cup chocolate chips

*(For a decadent twist: add skor bits to the top) 



Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a 13 x 9 inch pan or a cookie sheet with parchment paper for easy clean up. Arrange crackers evenly in pan. In saucepan over medium heat, melt butter. Stir in brown sugar until melted and smooth. Bring mixture to a boil, stirring constantly until mixture is smooth and bubbly. Boil for 2 minutes and then pour mixture evenly over crackers. Bake in the oven for 5 minutes. Sprinkle chocolate chips evenly over caramel mixture. Return to oven long enough for the chocolate just to melt. Take out of oven and spread chocolate evenly. (This is when you can sprinkle the skor bits on top!!) Place pan in fridge or freezer until chocolate is firm. Cut or break into pieces.

If you decide to make this recipe with your family or friends this holiday season, which essential skills would you be using?

Answer: reading (reading the recipe), numeracy (measuring ingredients) and thinking (job task planning & organizing).

SCNC 2015 Partners



Skills/Comp�tences Canada would like to thank all of its SCNC 2015 and WorldSkills Team Canada 2015 sponsors and suppliers!