Conestoga news

March 24, 2017 3:58 PM

Ontario invests in pre-apprenticeship training

MPP Liz Sandals visited Conestoga’s Guelph campus on Friday, March 24 to announce an investment of $250,416 from the Government of Ontario to support the delivery of free pre-apprenticeship training.

Guelph announcement March 2017.JPG
On March 24, MPP Liz Sandals visited the Guelph campus to announce a provincial investment of $250,416 to support the delivery of free pre-apprenticeship training. Pictured L -R: Trades and apprenticeship chair Stephen Speers, Truck and Coach/Heavy Equipment pre-apprenticeship graduate Konrad Hillenaar, MPP Liz Sandals, Executive dean Julia Biedermann, President John Tibbits

The Heavy Duty Equipment/Truck and Coach Technician pre-apprenticeship program will help 24 local trainees develop trade-specific knowledge, job skills and employment experience and fulfill Level 1 classroom training requirements for the 310T apprenticeship.

The program, which begins on March 27 at Conestoga’s Guelph campus, includes 31 weeks of training and an 8-week work placement. It is free for eligible participants: costs for tuition, textbooks, safety equipment and tools are covered through the funding provided the Government of Ontario.

“Ontario is investing more than $14 million across the province to help people prepare for careers in skilled trades,” said Liz Sandals, MPP for Guelph. “By creating opportunities for more people to receive training and education in skilled trades, we will support greater economic growth and job creation, and help build a dynamic economy that works for all.”

“We’re very pleased to work with the Government of Ontario to help more people acquire the skills and knowledge they need to launch successful careers,” said Conestoga President John Tibbits. “Providing opportunities for everyone to achieve their potential transforms lives, creates prosperous communities, and builds a stronger Ontario.”

Konrad Hillenaar entered the pre-apprenticeship training program in March 2015. Within a month of completing the program, he was hired by a local company, and soon after, he was registered as an apprentice. He recently completed his Level 2 apprenticeship training and looks forward to obtaining his Certificate of Qualification in the next few years.

“The pre-apprenticeship program opened the door to a great company and career that would have otherwise been out of my reach,” Hillenaar said. “I am grateful for the impact the program has had on my life and wish the 2017 class the best of luck!”

Conestoga is a provincial leader in trades and apprenticeship training, delivering a comprehensive array of programs in the construction, motive power, industrial and service sectors. For more information, visit