Winnipeg-based information technology service provider Oxygen Technical Services Limited is the first recipient of the Canada Job Grant, which helps Canadians obtain job training by providing up to $15,000 per person for related costs. When fully implemented, a total of $300 million will be invested in the effort on a national basis.
Oxygen, which has 20 employees, provides clients including Cisco Systems and Dell with procurement, project management and managed services. Funds from the Canada Job Grant will now allow the company to invest more than $56,000 to support skills training and certification for 15 current employees. Those funds include more than $18,000 from Oxygen’s own coffers.
The firm was selected as the grant’s first recipient for several reasons: the training will lead to certification, which in turn supports job creation; the training is linked to company growth; and Oxygen is a small business in a vital economic sector. Oxygen was an early applicant for the Canada Job Grant and met basic selection criteria by providing eligible training costs, employer contributions, a third-party trainer and an available job at the end of training.
“Our government’s top priorities are creating jobs, economic growth and long-term prosperity,” Minister of Employment and Social Development Jason Kenney said in a statement when announcing the launch of the program. “The Canada Job Grant is part of our commitment to address the paradox of too many Canadians in an economy of too many jobs without Canadians. With employers’ skin in the game, the Canada Job Grant will lead to a guaranteed job.”
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