16 Mar Province to Pilot Technology Advantage Program
A new tech program will be piloted in Nova Scotia schools, designed to prepare students for successful careers in the provinces growing tech sector.
The Technology Advantage Program will be offered at junior high schools which feed into Cole Harbour District High School, J.L. Ilsley High School and Yarmouth Consolidated Memorial High School, with up to 80 students participating.
“Creating opportunities for young people to see a future for themselves in Nova Scotia”
The program is a part of a partnership between the province, IBM, and Nova Scotia Community College (NSCC), and is inspired by IBM’s Pathways in Technology Early College High School, known as the P-TECH model.
P-TECH is designed in a way that creates a direct connection between high school, college and career, and school boards are taking notice of its success. First launched in 2011, P-TECH’s early results show increased graduation rates and employment. By the end of 2019 will be available in 200 schools across 14 countries.
“Creating opportunities for young people to see a future for themselves in Nova Scotia is an important priority for government,” said Premier Stephen McNeil. “This new and unique program will help address future labour market needs in our province’s growing technology sector.
Students first enter the program in grade 9 and then continue with it past graduation, proceeding directly into a two-year technology diploma at the Nova Scotia Community College. Tuition will be covered by the government, part of the $2 million dollar investment into the program.
“Prepare our students for the new technology-driven opportunities of the future”
“We are designing programs and opportunities to fit student needs and help them succeed,” said Zach Churchill, Minister of Education and Early Childhood Development. “This is a great example and I’m excited to partner with IBM and NSCC to help students get ready for careers in a sector where there is need and opportunity.”
Access to workplace experiences is an integral part of P-TECH, including mentorship opportunities, internships and co-operative education placement, and classroom learning. The learning curriculum is structured this way to best tech students skills which are in demand. Upon completion of the diploma, P-TECH grads are guaranteed interviews for available IBM jobs.
“As business, government and education leaders, we all have a role to play to prepare our students for the new technology-driven opportunities of the future,” said Ayman Antoun, president, IBM Canada. “The skills gap is mounting as new technologies transform industries and jobs.
“The IBM P-TECH education model is all about preparing the next generation of our workforce and providing new pathways for young people to be successful.”
Nova Scotia’s Technology Advantage Program is launching in September 2019, with more information to be made available to the families of eligible students.