Ontario Youth Apprenticeship Program (OYAP) - Toronto District School Board
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We are always looking to connect with former students, teachers, and employers to highlight the great learning and opportunities for success that our OYAP can create. Please contact us if you have a story to share, or are willing to be a guest speaker to encourage other young people to participate in OYAP. 

Coming Soon: Some Student Success Story Videos! You'll hear from successful students in our Cook program, Hairstyling Program, and Electrical Program. They did OYAP and they are happy and employed now in their trade of choice. 

An Employer Experience

One company described their connections to OYAP. “In April, a clean-up kid started at our service facility in Ajax at the age of 16. The next year in high school we had him as a co-op student. After one more year we signed him up on the OYAP program. We then had him do the rest of his apprenticeship including some of the Carquest C.T.I. programs as well as some offered by NAPA and Head office. Today, the "Lube kid" was informed that he had passed the Auto Technician Challenge Exam and has become one of Ontario's newest Automotive Technicians with Inter-Provincial standing."

A Student Experience

From his presentation at “Passport to Prosperity” in Toronto, Jeffery Garvin related his story. Jeffery was at a school that didn’t really feature tech opportunities. He transferred to another school where he completed his grade eleven requirements with two construction technology credits and applied to the four credit accelerated carpentry OYAP for semester two.  He said that Business and Technical program schools concentrate on providing students with the necessary skills for entry into the workplace on graduation.

Jeffery said, “I have learned so much there about myself. My construction classes taught me much about building and this year we got to go to ‘Habitat for Humanity’ for two days. It was awesome. We were doing the things that we had been taught about. It was a real hands-on experience. I felt so capable and smart and developed leadership skills. We also went for five days to the Outdoor Education Learning Centre at Kearney where working in teams, we built some badly-needed structures. My co-op placement at Kitchen Traditions, a small cabinet shop specializing in custom kitchens, taught me about the more finished aspects of working in the construction business and although unpaid, the learning more than compensated for the lack of remuneration. All things considered, the courses at Eaton along with the co-op experience have shown me that attitude and initiative are rewarded and I’m now better prepared for the Accelerated OYAP carpentry program. I’m ready for it.” Jeffery concluded his talk by stating, “When I become a construction employer I will definitely hire co-op students and show them the way to OYAP. I want to get my Level 1 and then keep going.”

A Few Parent Experiences

Joyce Gibbons related her story as a parent. “To build, create; accomplish, to see, feel and touch a project from inception to completion I believe must be one of the most self rewarding tasks that one can undertake. I think that the Ontario Youth Apprentice Program gives our young men and women the opportunity to do all this. This program possesses such power. It captures the minds and imaginations of our youth. Not only does it build self-confidence and self-esteem, it also provides them with the hands-on knowledge that they require to go forth and be part of the much needed and very profitable skilled trades world. It changed my view of the trades and my son is a success. First hand, I saw it with Erik. He was a typical boy loving Lego, video games, and hockey, and he wasn’t a fan of conventional schooling. He was creative and task oriented and didn’t like just sitting in a room. The TDSB OYAP program provided the opening to a thoroughly rewarding career in the trades. I can’t say enough about it. This program should be enlarged and encouraged to grow in every capacity. Our society is in desperate need of qualified, trained, passionate skilled labour. I fully believe OYAP is the gateway to the jumping off point of success for our youth.”

Beth relates her story as a parent: "Hello Mr. Smith.  John wanted me to contact you to let you know how/what he is doing.  He thought you may be interested to know that he has started working for a construction company, on a building site at Yonge and Eglinton.  He was offered a full time, permanent position as a Liuna member--with full benefits, pension, life insurance, etc.  He is thrilled.  His starting salary, as an apprentice is $28 per hour.  When he completes the apprenticeship the salary will be $36 per hour.  He thought you may want to use this information for your next group of students in the construction craft program.  He is joyously awaiting his first pay cheque on Friday.  

He was told by his boss that he was offered the job, rather than others who had applied for the position before him, and who were older than him, because he had all of the training with Liuna from the co-op placement last year.

I wanted to take a minute to say thanks as well.  As a parent we always worry about what our kids will do with their lives and how they will take care of themselves when they become independent.  This is an amazing opportunity for him, and I am really grateful that he received the training and the step in the right direction from your program."

A Co-op Teacher Experience

Ann Dwornik relates her story as a co-op teacher. “In June, Dejan began his apprenticeship with Mercedes-Benz Silver Arrow. After three co-op experiences, Dejan was not only convinced that Auto Service Technician was the career for him, but he had also accumulated 660 hours towards his apprenticeship through the OYAP programme. Dejan started his first co-op placement at Mercedes-Benz, and they liked him so much they hired him to wash cars and to help around the shop. His next co-op experience was at Metro Garage. Dejan says that he learned from his supervisor there the importance of being able to diagnose a car by listening to it and looking at it.  European cars are the best, according to Dejan and he was back at Mercedes-Benz for his third placement this year. His supervisor at Mercedes-Benz was convinced that Dejan was someone they wanted to hire. Given the hours that he had logged through the OYAP programme, Dejan was an even a more attractive candidate as an apprentice. Dejan had taken the grade 10, 11 and 12 Auto Mechanics at Western Tech, which gave him a solid grounding for auto mechanics. By the end of the semester they were able to take him on as an apprentice. Dejan is thrilled with this opportunity. He is a former ESL student who by his own admission wasn’t great at paperwork at first, but he just seemed to know what to do when he’s with a car.”

Other Feature Student Experiences

Bradea Sheppard.jpgBradea Sheppard started her Co-op placement at Milestones Restaurant at Scarborough Town Centre. At first she started doing preparations then graduated to making sauces. Eventually she went on to the short order line. She was so fast and efficient you could not tell she was new to the job. She always wanted to be a chef and is on her way to realise her dream because she was offered an apprenticeship through OYAP. Bravo!






Phillip Seepersaud.jpg

Phillip Seepersaud, upon the completion of his co-op program, will be hired on as a full time apprentice with Ircan Plumbing. This is a reputable plumbing company that does large plumbing jobs often through government contracts. Phillip proved himself a most deserving individual having distinguished himself through hard work, personal discipline and exceptional on-the-job personality.




Tyler Stone.jpg

Tyler Stone chose the electrical placement at Albright Electrical in Pickering. From Scarborough he travelled to Pickering and across the city never missing a day of work. His job performance was exemplary. His employer rewarded Tyler with a personal set of electrical tools which he carries around in a hip pouch. He will be hired on as a full time apprentice once his co-op placement is completed. Congratulations!