Pathways Support Teacher Monica Ryan and SHSM sector lead Brian Chalupka have been working together to create a program at DCVI where students are learning about various Construction related skills. The availability of SHSM program funding has Chalupka planning to expand the Construction program to include residential construction skills, electrical components, plumbing and masonry. Chalupka, who is a licensed electrician, knows the importance of the trades. “With the average age of the skilled worker in Ontario at around 53, we really need to attract young people into the field. My goal is to give the students a small taste of as many trades as possible that are involved in residential construction. My hope is that students might be inspired and want to pursue one of the trades as a viable career option.” Chalupka says.
Students who are enrolled in the SHSM will be focusing their studies to support a career in the Construction sector in one of the four pathways: University, College, Apprenticeship and Workplace. Students will complete Standard First Aid with Level C CPR, Working at Heights training, and basic health and safety, including W.H.M.I.S. They will also participate in various elective certifications that can support work related skills, as well as a reach ahead activity that could include a visit to a college or a university, and an experiential learning opportunity that will support their learning by acquiring additional transferable skills that can be used once they enter the workforce. For the final component of the SHSM, students will work with a community partner to learn more about mathematical literacy or coding in relation to the Construction sector or an Innovation, Creativity and Entrepreneurship (ICE) challenge where students will use inquiry skills to solve a problem.
Avon Maitland’s SHSM board lead Jodi Froud says, “Students who graduate with the SHSM seal will be more focused and prepared to pursue the pathway that they are interested in, whether that be university, college, workplace or apprenticeship. The enhancements to their studies, the experiential learning opportunities and the connections they are making with community partners will give them an edge upon graduation.”
Any employers that are interested in learning more about the SHSM or would like to be involved in the program are encouraged to contact Monica Ryan at the school.