News

IMTARC’s Aboriginal graduates start work at Meridian Marine

Esquimalt, BC – Dec. 15, 2014 – The Industrial Marine Training and Applied Research Centre (IMTARC), BC's key shipbuilding and repair industry workforce development integrator, today announced that seven of 13 graduates from the First Nations Employment Society (FNES) “Passport to Shipbuilding and Repair” course will immediately begin work at Vancouver-based Meridian Marine Industries Inc. This is in addition to the earlier graduates from IMTARC coursing who are already employed by Meridian Marine.

The eight-week course, which was held at the Musqueam First Nation in Vancouver, began on October 20 and ended Friday, December 12. The curriculum was designed and developed by IMTARC for FNES. 

The 13 participants were given an overview of the shipbuilding and repair industry and also had the opportunity to tour local shipyards and take part in hands-on job experience at Meridian Marine. During the training, the students dramatically improved their math and English assessment scores, and worked effectively during their work practicum at Meridian Marine.

“The success of these programs relies heavily on employer support," said Michelle Traoré, IMTARC’s Manager of Operations and course instructor. “We are very lucky to have an employer like Meridian Marine, as they went above and beyond in providing these quality opportunities for our aboriginal students.”

Commenting on the new hires, Jerry Pedneault, Operations Manager for Meridian Marine said, “It was exciting to see the exuberance these young graduates demonstrated, combined with their desire and drive to gain more knowledge of the marine industry. We look forward to working with this group and others, as they become an integral part of the future of the marine industry on the West Coast.”                                                                                               

While the seven now working at Meridian Marine are happy to have been hired, the other six course graduates will be focusing on going back to school to pursue their goal of working in the shipbuilding and repair industry.                                                                         

About IMTARC
The Industrial Marine Training and Applied Research Centre (IMTARC) is a scalable value-adding system integrator for workforce development and applied research that contributes to the competitiveness and productivity of BC’s shipbuilding and repair industry. SkillSource (formerly known as the RTO) owns and operates IMTARC on behalf of industry that sets the direction and priorities for the Centre. For more information, contact Michelle Traoré at 778-265-5005 or michelle.traore@imtarc.com.

About Meridian Marine
Vancouver, BC-based Meridian Marine Industries Inc. was founded in 1995, and is recognized as a quality provider of ship repair, new construction and offshore services for provincial, national and international clients. Meridian Marine is a privately-held company. For more information, contact James McFadden at 604-270-2775 or jmcfadden@meridianmarine-inc.com.

About First Nations Employment Society
The First Nations Employment Society was incorporated as a non-profit society in April 1997 and provides leadership in developing Aboriginal Human Resources at a regional level. FNES represents ten First Nations as well as on/off reserve people residing in the Vancouver Sunshine Coast areas. FNES manages an agreement with Service Canada on behalf of the ten First Nations with delegated authority for training and employment in the Vancouver Sunshine Coast region of British Columbia. For more information, contact Jay Mearns at 604-605-7194 or jaymearns@fnes.ca.