Woman working in the trades

Current Students

Thinking about a career in the trades, but not sure where to start? There are a number of programs and services that can help you decide if a career in the trades is right for you:

  • Careersintrades.ca provides information to students, recent graduates, parents, and educators, answering the question "Why the Trades?". The site offers a step-by-step guide to beginning a career in the trades and helps dispel common myths about the trades.
  • The Ontario Youth Apprenticeship Program (OYAP) allows secondary students to gain valuable work experience in the trades while gaining credits towards their diploma.
  • The Ontario College of Trades website provides information about specific trades, including career descriptions and certification requirements.

International Qualifications

Do you have experience working as a tradesperson outside of Ontario or Canada? The following sites will provide you with information about getting your experience and education recognized in the province:

Planning to move to Canada and want to prepare for work before your arrival? The Build ON program is a free, pre-arrival service that helps immigrants prepare for a career in the skilled Trades. Click here or call 1.613.237.1320 ext. 5039 for more information.


An apprentice is someone who trains in a skilled job through work experience, under the supervision and direction of an experienced worker. More information about apprenticeship is available on the following pages:  

Several local organizations can also provide information about apprenticeship programs, including the Goodwill Career Centre in Chatham and St. Clair College Employment Services in Wallaceburg.

To become an apprentice, you need to find an employer who will oversee your training and register you as an official apprentice. The directory on the right can connect you with experienced trades workers in the Chatham-Kent area who might be able to help arrange an apprenticeship. Websites such as apprenticeshipsearch.com can also help you find employers seeking apprentices.

Most apprentices participate in formal classroom instruction to supplement their on-the-job education. In Chatham-Kent the following schools offer apprenticeship programs in a number of fields:

Financial aid is available to help off-set the cost of training and tools. The provincial government offers loans for tool costs and grants for in-class training, and there are several federal grants, loans and tax credits for skilled trade workers and their employers at all stages of their training. 

Finding Work in the Trades

Canada is facing a skills-shortage, and there are many opportunities to work in the trades in Chatham-Kent. The directory on the right can connect you with skilled tradespeople who might be looking for employees, and be sure to regularly check the Municipality of Chatham-Kent's job board for postings. Our Employer Profiles provide more information on Chatham-Kent employers, some of which require workers in the skilled trades.

If you are thinking of setting up your own business in Chatham-Kent, there are a number of resources available to you. See our Entrepreneurship section for more information, or visit Chatham-Kent's Small Business Centre site.