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Government of Canada Helps Albertans Prepare for Their Careers

EDMONTON, ALBERTA--(Marketwire - Nov. 20, 2009) - Young
members of the community will have the opportunity to learn about career and
education opportunities and connect with employers as a result of support from
the Government
of Canada. Mr. Laurie Hawn, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National
Defence and Member of Parliament for Edmonton Centre, on behalf of the
Honourable Diane Finley, Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development,
made the announcement today at the opening ceremonies for Edmonton's Canada
Career Week Fair 2009.



"In today's environment, it is more important than ever that
all Canadians have the skills and information they need to participate and
succeed in the job market,"
said Mr. Hawn. "Our government is proud to support activities that encourage
citizens to use their talents, skills and resources to help them learn, work and
participate in their communities."


Edmonton's Canada Career Week Fair 2009 will receive $36,000
through the Government of Canada's Youth Awareness program. This two-day career
information and job fair will be held today, between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m.,
and tomorrow, between 10:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m., at the Edmonton Expo Centre.


"We would like to thank the federal government for their
contribution," said Ms. Clare Denman, Producer of the Canada Career Week Fair
and Senior Manager of Currie Communications. "It is due to the generosity of our
funding partners that our community's youth will have the opportunity to meet
over 150 employers under one roof."


The Youth Awareness program is part of the Government of
Canada's strategy to create the best educated, most skilled and most flexible
workforce in the world.


Through Canada's Economic Action Plan, the Government is
increasing funding for Canada Summer Jobs by $10 million per year in 2009 and
2010 to help create additional summer jobs for students. Federal public service
student employment programs will also receive an additional $20 million over the
next two years to enhance student employment in the federal public service.



In addition, the Government is investing up to $40 million
per year in the new Apprenticeship Completion Grant through its Economic Action
Plan. It is a $2,000 grant to those who successfully complete their
apprenticeship training and become certified journeypersons in a designated Red
Seal trade. This grant builds on and enhances the current Apprenticeship
Incentive Grant.



Under the existing Apprenticeship Incentive Grant,
apprentices are already eligible for a $1,000 grant when they complete the first
and/or second level of their apprenticeship program in a designated Red Seal
trade, to a maximum of $2,000.



Furthermore, the Government recently implemented significant
improvements to student financial assistance measures to help students gain
access to post-secondary education and better manage their debt.



The Youth Awareness program is delivered by Service Canada,
which provides one-stop personalized services for Government of Canada programs,
services and benefits. For more information about this program, call 1 800
O-Canada, go on the Internet at servicecanada.gc.ca, or visit your local Service
Canada Centre.


To learn more about Canada's Economic Action Plan, visit www.actionplan.gc.ca.



BACKGROUNDER



Edmonton's Canada Career Week Fair 2009 promotes career and
education opportunities to Albertans and connects employers with potential
employees. This two-day career information and job fair will be held on November
20, 2009, between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m., and November 21, 2009, between 10:00
a.m. and 4:00 p.m., at the Edmonton Expo Centre (Northlands Agricom Edmonton).
This year's fair will feature approximately 175 exhibits and is expected to draw
more than 7,500 visitors. It will consist of information sessions,
presentations, skills demonstrations and workshops. The presentations will bring
a wide range of career choices to the forefront, such as emergency services,
design and fashion and robotics, while the skills demonstrations will promote
skilled trades and technologies as a first choice career option for Alberta
youth. The information sessions and workshops will feature employment
specialists who can help individuals identify their next career step.



The federal Youth Awareness program, funded under Employment
Insurance Part II, targets projects that respond to specific labour market
requirements and adjustments over time, and aims to promote youth as the
workforce of the future among recipients, employers, communities and young
Canadians.



Canada Summer Jobs is an initiative of the Summer Work
Experience program. It provides funding for not-for-profit organizations, public
sector employers, and small businesses with 50 or fewer employees to create
high-quality summer job opportunities for students between the ages of 15 and
30.



The Government of Canada operates three programs to help
Canadian students from all parts of the country gain valuable skills and work
experience within the public service. These programs are the Federal Student
Work Experience Program, the Co-operative Education and Internship Program, and
the Research Affiliate Program. Students who complete these programs may be
hired or "bridged" into a wide range of federal public service jobs.



The Apprenticeship Completion Grant (ACG) is a $2,000 taxable cash grant to registered
apprentices who complete their training, and become certified journeypersons in
a designated Red Seal trade. The ACG will provide an additional incentive for
young Canadians to finish their training and launch rewarding careers in the
skilled trades.


The Apprenticeship Incentive Grant is a $1,000 taxable cash
grant to registered apprentices when they complete the first and/or second level
of their apprenticeship program in a designated Red Seal trade, to a maximum of
$2,000. When combined with the ACG, apprentices who complete their training and
become certified journeypersons in a designated Red Seal trade could be eligible
to receive up to $4,000.



The new Canada Student Grants Program will help students
across Canada lower their debt once they finish their post-secondary education.
This program will reach over 245,000 students annually, including 105,000
recipients from low- and middle-income families who did not previously qualify
for a grant. Students are not required to pay the grant money back.


The new federal Repayment Assistance Plan is available for
student loan borrowers who are having difficulty making their Canada Student
Loan payments.







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