Apprenticeships

An apprenticeship allows students to learn a skilled trade while gaining paid on-the-job work experience. This page provides information on apprenticeships and the various grants available through the federal government.

Apprenticeship programs

Apprenticeship programs are usually offered through a college or vocational school and help prepare you for a career in the trades. The programs are structured to provide both classroom learning and on-the-job experience.

Although most of the learning in an apprenticeship is on the job, there is also an in-class component through a college. Apprentices typically spend 80-85% of their education and training in the workplace.

At the end of the apprenticeship training program, the apprentice becomes a journeyperson and is certified to work in the trade.

There are many different career opportunities in the trades, ranging from construction and roofing to cooking and hairstyling. Visit Skills Canada to learn more about careers in the trades.

Certification of qualification

Each province and territory has its own list of designated trades that are eligible for apprenticeship programs.

To be certified to work in a trade, many provinces and territories require a formal Certification of Qualification. Certification varies depending on the province or territory. See the links below for information about the apprenticeship rules and requirements of the province or territory where you’re apprenticing.

Red Seal certification

The Red Seal Program is an inter-provincial certification program for tradespeople and journeypeople that is recognized across Canada. There are more than 50 different Red Seal trades. The program is considered a “standard of excellence” among tradespeople, and certifies that the tradesperson with a Red Seal is highly skilled.

Each province or territory has a unique list of designated trades that are eligible for certification, as well as province-specific certification processes. The Red Seal certification allows tradespeople to practice their trades across the country without having to obtain individual provincial certifications.

Even if a trade requiring a Certification of Qualification in your province or territory also happens to be a Red Seal trade, it is still not mandatory to obtain Red Seal certification.

Apprenticeship grants

If you’re an apprentice registered in one of the over 50 Red Seal trades, you may be eligible for up to $4000 in apprenticeship grants. These grants can be used to pay for tuition, travel, tools or other expenses.

Apprenticeship Incentive Grant

The Apprenticeship Incentive Grant is a taxable cash grant of $1,000 per year/level, up to a maximum of $2,000. This grant helps registered apprentices in designated Red Seal trades get started.

Apprenticeship Completion Grant

The Apprenticeship Completion Grant is a taxable cash grant of $2,000. This grant helps registered apprentices who have completed their training become certified journeypersons in designated Red Seal trades.

Other helpful pages