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Ready-to-Work (RTW) is a national sector-based program that assists individuals who plan to enter or re-enter the workforce. The objective of the RTW program is to provide unemployed or under-employed individuals, including those with post-secondary education, First Nations peoples and newcomers to Canada with the proper mix of skills, knowledge, attitude, contacts and experience for a career in tourism.
Curriculum materials include emerit Tourism Essentials created by the Canadian Tourism Human Resource Council as well as a career planning guide which includes; Organizational practices, Job Search skills and Resume writing. Numerous certifications are eligible within the free course: Responsible Beverage; Food Safe; SuperHost, Mature Consumer; First Aid and CPR to name a few.
The delivery of this program has undergone extensive exploration and augmenting the culturally diverse courses is a program called Canadian Workplace Essentials a review of the necessary soft skills required for the Canadian workplace. We have also developed a flexible agenda for the program whereby it may take three weeks or six weeks to complete. Each is as pertinent as the other and as successful with the clients needs being looked after.
"The training really left no room for improvement. The class was extremely diverse with native NBers and also five individuals who have moved to Canada from other countries to make NB their home. The instructor was awesome at assuring everyone that they are important and their opinion and outlook and experiences added value to the program."
Over the past year, TIANB has facilitated seven unique programs around the province resulting in 68 highly enthusiastic and newly trained graduates. These graduates come out of the program armed with a number of relevant industry certifications, a change of attitude toward the tourism industry and a large dose of confidence. Facilitators of the program often comment that it is highly rewarding to watch participants grow and strengthen their confidence over the span of the program. Those who are timid at the beginning of the program are sometimes the first to go and shake an employer's hand at graduation.
Click here to read about the Woodstock class of Spring 2010
Not only does the program help change confidence levels and attitudes about the tourism industry, for some it is a life changing experience. Ya-Wen Ho is a graduate from one of our Fredericton classes in the fall of 2008. She came to New Brunswick with a background in the tourism industry but was unsure of how to prepare for the Canadian tourism workforce. This is her story:
What made you decide to participate in the Ready to Work program?
- I had been working in tourism for a long time. Before coming to Canada I worked in large hotels as an event coordinator, a banquet server and in a travel agency as well. I am a people person I love people and that's how I got started in the tourism industry. I was looking for a way to get involved in the tourism industry in New Brunswick when I saw an ad in the paper for a free tourism program. I was curious so I called for information and registered.
How long did it take you to find employment after your program finished?
-I had a job interview before the program at a hotel but I did not get the job. I know now this is because I did not have the right interview skills. After taking the program, I learned many interview skills and I had a chance for an interview at another hotel about a month after I finished Ready to Work. This time, I got the job. After 6 months I applied for a supervisor position that was open and I got that too. So now I am a supervisor and very happy doing my job.
In what other ways did the Ready to Work program help you prepare for this job?
-It was a great orientation to the tourism industry and it was helpful to learn about Canadian tourism methods. It was also very helpful and useful to have the chance to learn how to present myself. During the course I learned that my previous tourism skills would help me find a job because the principle of customer service is the same across the world. I love what I am doing, and do not want to miss anything fun in this field. There is one thing you have to know, I would not have my current job if I had not attended the program with you.
What advice would you give others who are considering the Ready to Work program or tourism as a career?
-This course was great and I learned so many things about the tourism industry. For jobs, you have to have patience and be willing to get the experience. People who start at the bottom move up and that's how you get experience. You have to have determination and believe what you are doing is right. It helps to stay positive and take pride in your work. I tell my staff "you work for yourself so be proud of what you do."
Ya-Wen's story is just one of many that we have the pleasure of hearing every day. Other comments we received for this year's programs are:
"The course is excellent. I am glad I took it. It was very helpful, educating, and entertaining. I would take the course over again. I don't want it to end."
" Ce course est à encourager car il ouvre les portes et est bon pour des jeunes et des moins jeunes et les consommateurs d'âge d'or. C'est Excellent de A-a Z. Bravo à vous tous de l'AITNB. "
Because the goal of this program is encourage employment within the tourism sector it is important to include our successes. In 2008 alone our employment rate for graduates was 80% and in 2009 the rate is at 55% and climbing every day. The rewards of the Ready to Work program have no limits. For participants it is gaining transferable skills, confidence and of course the chance to meet the industry and employers right in the classroom. For employers it is having a bank of trained potential employees to choose from who come with recognized provincial and national industry certifications.
Cost per participant : Free - A Value estimated at $2500.00 per participant.
Contact Catherine McPhee 1(800) 668-5313 or email@example.com to register or learn more.
Click here for a list of the most recent Graduates of the Ready to Work program