Actua Receives $1.97M from the Government of Canada to Develop and Deliver Work-Integrated Learning Experiences for Postsecondary Students

Media Release

Ottawa - Ontario, June 24, 2021

Today, Actua announced $1,970,000 in funding from the Government of Canada’s Innovative Work-Integrated Learning program to support in offering its national network members’ postsecondary student instructors new work-integrated learning opportunities that develop their employability skills and professional networks.

“These instructors are integral to the reach and impact of our STEM programming across Canada,” said Jennifer Flanagan, Founder and CEO, Actua. “It’s important to Actua that we invest in their futures, as much as they invest in the children they reach. With this federal support, we will offer more work-integrated learning experiences that prepare instructors for the future job industry, which is being revolutionized by science, technology, engineering and math (STEM).”

The program is built on Actua’s existing Future Skills Program, which annually reaches 1,000 postsecondary students across Canada, and will leverage its committed network of industry partners, such as the RBC Foundation, Finning Canada, Rogers Communications Inc., Randstad Canada and more to collaboratively create and deliver industry-led work experiences. These experiences include activities such as interactive webinars, virtual hackathons, online career days, virtual internships and thought leadership events, and are designed to prepare youth for a successful entry into the labour market.

“When experience is so important to getting a job – but so hard to gain especially when the pandemic has upended many of the traditional summer jobs in hospitality, tourism, childcare and summer camps – young people are left feeling uncertain about their futures in the new world of work ,” said Mark Beckles, Vice President, Social Impact & Innovation, RBC. “We hope that through our on-going partnership with Actua, we can help young people get those all-important first jobs and break the ‘no experience, no job’ cycle.”

This funding also supports Actua in building even greater diversity among its instructors. The program incorporates strategies to recruit underserved populations, including, but not limited to, Indigenous youth, official language minorities, new Canadians, persons with disabilities, LGBTQ2 and racialized youth.

“Young Canadians often face challenges as they transition from school to work, and these have increased due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Now more than ever, it is important to support inclusive access to education and work experiences that prepare all Canadians for a successful future. As a leader of innovative work-integrated learning, Actua will help Canadian students gain the relevant, real-life work experience they need to enter the workforce.” – Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Disability Inclusion, Carla Qualtrough.

About Actua

Actua is Canada’s largest science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) youth outreach network representing over 40 university and college based members. Each year, Actua’s growing network of member organizations reach over 350,000 young Canadians in 500 communities nationwide with programs that build skills and confidence in critical future employment areas. Actua focuses on the engagement of underrepresented youth through specialized programs for Indigenous youth, girls and young women, at-risk youth and youth living in Northern and remote communities. Its national InSTEM program reaches over 35,000 Indigenous youth per year in over 200 Indigenous communities. Actua’s major funding partners include: Government of Canada, Google Canada, the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada, RBC Foundation, Suncor Energy Foundation, TD, Toyota Canada Foundation, Finning Canada, Microsoft Canada, Imperial and Lockheed Martin Canada. For more information about Actua, visit actua.ca.

Contact Information

Katrina King, Director of Communications, Actua
111 Murray Street, Ottawa ON K1N 5M5
Tel: (613) 234 4137 Fax: 613 234 4779
Email: katrina.king@actua.ca
Web: www.actua.ca