Experience Ontario

Experience Ontario is a pilot program for a limited number of recent high school graduates who have an interest in attending postsecondary education or apprenticeship training, but are uncertain of their next steps. This is part of the Ontario government’s plan to support a highly skilled workforce. The focus of the program is career exploration and involves a number of activities and components.

Each participant:

  • Has a personal career coach to help them develop a postsecondary education and career plan based on their strengths and interests
  • Participates in a conference where they learn more about work habits and workplace safety, and innovation, creativity and entrepreneurship
  • Has up to three paid full-time work placements totalling up to nine months. These placements may be in sectors related to their career interests
  • Visits a nearby postsecondary education institution or apprenticeship training facility
  • Has their application fee to college or university or first year College of Trades membership fee for apprentices paid for through the program

Experience Ontario Work Placements

Participants have up to three different placements totalling up to nine months in sectors related to their career interests. Participants can have different employers for each of their three placements or one employer for one or two longer placements. If a participant is with the same employer for a longer placement, it should be in different areas of the organization or doing different tasks.

Employers pay participants at least the minimum wage and are eligible for a subsidy. If participants require personal protective equipment, this cost will be covered by the program in addition to the wage subsidy.

Career coaches collaborate with participants to organize work placements. They also maintain frequent contact with participants to guide, encourage and support them, to ensure success throughout the program and address any questions or concerns.

Employers benefit from:

  • Motivated youth keen on making a contribution
  • A financial incentive to offset participants’ wages
  • Opportunity for staff to develop mentoring skills
  • Potential candidates for future employment (upon completion of postsecondary education or apprenticeship training)

Participants benefit by:

  • Identifying, exploring and refining career goals and making informed decisions about their future
  • Gaining sector-specific knowledge and/or technical skills that will assist them in their transition to apprenticeship training, college or university
  • Further developing essential work habits and transferable skills

If you have graduated from high school in 2016 and think this program could be for you, contact:

Luanne Brazeau, Experience Ontario, Career Coach
Tel: 705-268-3033 x 4116
Email: brazeaul@northern.on.ca