Enabling tomorrow’s workforce today

Invest in the future. Hire Alberta youth.


Strong vibrant communities where youth develop successful careers


Enable youth on their path to rewarding careers

I’ve always been a hands-on learner, and I didn’t want the fact that welding is a male-dominated industry to stop me from pursuing my passion. Thanks to CAREERS, my off-campus coordinator at Hilltop High School, and the Registered Apprenticeship Program, I was able to earn credits while gaining hands-on experience in the trade. Now, I’m a year away from my journey person’s ticket in a career I love.

Kennedy Bahm
Welding Apprentice

Embracing New Challenges

We take pride in our ability to adapt to the changing needs of our stakeholders, so when COVID-19 began impacting Albertans, CAREERS jumped into action. We offered support to educators with engaging, interactive online presentations.  Our first ever virtual health camp was a resounding success, drawing students from more communities across the province than ever before. Our new School Bulletin has continued to provide educators with online tools, resources, and opportunities. Yes, the pandemic has challenged us all, but together we have found ways to continue safely supporting youth on their path to career success.

Jonan Hatt
CAREERS Program Coordinator

A message from the Chair and President & CEO

2020 in Review and the New Year Ahead

2020 has certainly proven to be a very challenging year with COVID-19 and a struggling global economy and it required CAREERS to be more agile and flexible in delivering career opportunities to Alberta youth to experience a workplace internship.  Fortunately, we were well positioned to extend our ability to go virtual in supporting students and employers.  CAREERS, with our school partners, connected students with employers in 853 paid internships while ensuring the safety of our team and all stakeholders with the introduction of some very rigorous COVID-19 safety protocols.

A new Information and Communications Technology (ICT) program was launched to provide internship opportunities with a focus on digital skills currently in high demand as our society becomes more technology dependent and driven. The development of other new pathways began in Non-Destructive Testing, Agriculture and Motor Transport that support in-demand career opportunities.

CAREERS remains committed to increasing the number of paid internships for Alberta youth to 6,000 annually in a few short years and have identified a number of initiatives with schools and employers to get us to our goal.  

As we look forward to 2021, we know both the pandemic and the economy will continue to impact our efforts. However, the programs we deliver in trades and technologies, along with well-paying career options for youth, will be more important than ever.

We appreciate all the support in these tough times from students, parents, schools, employers and funders as we prepare for brighter days.  Together, we are building a motivated and talented skilled workforce that will pave the way to a better Alberta.

Jim Carter
Board Chair

Andy Neigel
President & CEO

Created for CAREERS by YouthComputing, a non-profit group in Fort McMurray comprised of youth interested in pursuing a career in Information & Communications Technology.

2020 Results

Paid Internships: 853 (80 Indigenous)

Employers: 482

Schools: 354


since 1997

Awards & Celebrations

Awards of Excellence

These awards recognize the remarkable efforts of student interns, employer mentors and off-campus champions in experiential learning. The John Aldred Ambassadorship Award and Eric Newell Award of Excellence honour exemplary ambassadors, leaders and champions of the CAREERS’ mission—enabling youth on their path to rewarding careers.

The High School Apprenticeship Scholarship Celebration highlights student achievement in the Registered Apprenticeship Program and Career and Technology Studies learning pathways.  For the first time ever, this event was broadcasted live online, bringing together students, parents, employers, and educators from across the province for a fun-filled and inspirational evening. Alberta Apprenticeship and Industry Training provides these annual scholarships to support the next generation of skilled trades professionals and industry game changers.

These awards recognize the remarkable efforts of student interns, employer mentors and off-campus champions in experiential learning. The John Aldred Ambassadorship Award and Eric Newell Award of Excellence honour exemplary ambassadors, leaders and champions of the CAREERS’ mission—enabling youth on their path to rewarding careers.

High school student Lainey Edmonds knew she liked working with cars, but after exploring different options through CAREERS, she discovered her perfect fit as an Outdoor Power Equipment Technician.

Her mentor, Chris Duffy, continues to support apprentices like Lainey because he says, it helps build his future workforce. “The Registered Apprenticeship Program is awesome. If you can get more high school kids into trades, whether it be mechanics or carpentry, or any trade right now, get them in it and get them going.”

They pointed me in the right direction, and I’ve got my foot in the door for a career now. Without this program I don’t know what I would have been doing.

Lainey Edmonds,

Outdoor Power Equipment
Technician Apprentice
Recreational Power Sports


The Registered Apprenticeship Program (RAP) is a joint Alberta Education and Alberta Apprenticeship and Industry Training (AIT) initiative allowing students to begin their apprenticeship training in their choice of over 50 skilled trades while still in high school. In partnership with schools, CAREERS facilitated 633 internships (35 Indigenous). These students (grade 10–12) earned credits, a wage and in some cases, hours towards journeyperson certification.

This unique program provides high school graduates (ages 18–25) with the opportunity to train for a career in the apprenticeship trades by rotating through employers on an annual basis. 111 CAREERS CO-OP students began or continued their journey this year (23 Indigenous). This program is only available in The Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo.

Students can earn both high school and post-secondary credits at the same time in the following programs: Oil and Gas Production, Water Wastewater Operations, 4th Class Power Engineering, and Non-Destructive Testing. In total, 12 students fast-tracked their training and explored these technology-driven careers.

CAREERS is committed to increasing the number of young women in non-traditional trades and technologies. In 2020, there were 82 internships and a variety of hands-on camps and workshops.

Registered Apprenticeship Program (RAP)

Internships Facilitated

It’s just been an amazing opportunity.

Mathew Unrau,

4th Class Power Engineering Intern
International Paper

Employment and Social Development Canada predicts that 180,000 tech workers will be needed in the next ten years as the fast-growing segment of Alberta’s economy.  This program engages youth to expand their tech skills and consider futures in the ICT sector. A pilot ran in Calgary and Fort McMurray with provincial expansion in 2021.

CAREERS, Work Wild and Inside Education have come together to create a powerhouse for increasing awareness of forestry occupations.  Efforts included presentations and events connecting industry experts with students throughout the province and resulted in 13 internships (2 Indigenous).

This program provides mentorship for Indigenous students, guiding them through career pathways in an expanded choice of occupations.  Continued success is strengthened through the formal partnerships with the Alexander First Nation, Fort McKay First Nation, and Metis Nation of Alberta Local 1935.

High school students can explore over 200 health-related occupations. In 2020, there were 17 internships (3 Indigenous), and 264 students who participated in CAREERS first ever virtual health camp.


October 1, 2019 – September 30, 2020
(reported in thousands)


Employer payroll contribution
to youth internships in 2020


Assets $2,034
Liabilities $612
Net Assets $1,422
Assets $2,806
Liabilities $2,231
Net Assets $575

Board of Directors & Leadership Team

As at December 10, 2020
JIM CARTER, OC, Board Chair
ERIC NEWELL, OC, Founding Chair


Michael Colborne
Chairman & CEO, Pacific Western Transportation

Andre Corbould,

Deputy Minister,
Alberta Education

Shirley Dul
Corporate Director

Doug Fingland
Director, TA Planning and Logistics Regional Services, Upstream, Suncor Energy

Heather Kennedy
Corporate Director

David LeMay,
Vice Chair
Corporate Director

Bernd Manz
Corporate Director

Brian McConkey,
Secretary & Treasurer, Finance and Audit Chair
VP Human Resources,
Millar Western Forest Products

Jerry McPherson
VP Maintenance & Projects, Syncrude Canada

Sheila O’Brien, CM
Corporate Director

Kristin Romeril
VP Operations,
Kaizen Automotive Group

Sandra Sutter
Indigenous Partnerships Manager, PTW Energy Services

John Wilson,
Nominations Chair

President & CEO, Hedco Group

Donavon Young,

Deputy Minister,
Alberta Indigenous Relations

CAREERS appreciates the contributions of retiring board members
Dr. Curtis Clarke, Deputy Minister, Alberta Education,
and Drew Zieglgansberger, Executive V.P., Upstream Cenovus Energy.

Leadership Team

Andy Neigel,  President & CEO

Ericka Folk,  Director Partnerships

Janis Lawrence-Harper,  Director Research & Development

Jolienne Halisky,  Director Finance & Corporate Services

Stacey Rishaug,  Director Marketing & Communications

Stefan Rutkowski,  Director Operations

A Winning Strategy

A love for skilled trades runs deep among the Patzer brothers in Fort McMurray. 21-year-old Kory started exploring his options while attending Westwood Community High School.  With help from his off-campus coordinator and CAREERS: The Next Generation, he was accepted into the Dual Credit Electrical Program.  From there, he joined the CAREERS CO-OP program, and is currently in the final year of completing his journeyperson certification.

19-year-old Levi joined the program next, but unlike his older brother, he found his path as an Industrial Mechanic (Millwright) through the Registered Apprenticeship Program. He was then accepted into the CAREERS CO-OP Program where he continues to work on his third year.

At just 17-years-old, Aiden took advantage of the Dual Credit Electrical Program with his sights set on getting journeyperson certification in multiple trades.

Kory couldn’t be happier to see his brothers following in his footsteps.

These programs were the right choice for me and my brothers because it gave us all constant work while allowing us to go to school to finish our apprenticeships. We were able to gain invaluable knowledge in our trade that we can now use for our futures.

Kory Patzer

Kory Patzer
Electrician Apprentice
Syncrude Canada

Aidan Patzer
Electrician Apprentice
Syncrude Canada

Levi Patzer
Industrial Mechanic Apprentice
Syncrude Canada

Strategic Pillars

Employer Engagement

CAREERS engages employers to provide career opportunities for youth.

Youth Engagement

Youth, parents, and teachers are aware of and excited about career integrated learning opportunities.

Indigenous Engagement

Indigenous youth are supported in career path awareness, exploration and experiences for greater participation in the Alberta economy.

Stakeholder Engagement

CAREERS is the partner of choice to enable youth career path development.

Fiscal Sustainability

Long-term, sustainable, diverse funding supports CAREERS initiatives.

The generosity of our donors provide a future for youth, enabling young people to:

  • Explore a career in demand now and in the future
  • Connect learning to earning
  • Be empowered with knowledge and skills on their way to a rewarding career


Leader $10,000+
Alcor Facilities Management
Calgary Shaw Charity Classic Foundation
Carter, Jim and Bray, Lorraine
City Lumber Corporation
Kal Tire
Silent Aire
Wilson, John and Leslie

Friend $1,000+
Calgary Chamber of Commerce
Calgary Construction Association
Calgary Regional Safety Committee
Cenovus Energy
Colborne, Michael
Fillmore Construction
Giles, Mel and Roberta
Gordon, Wendy
Greatwest Kenworth
Lawrence-Harper, Janis
Naiad Irrigation Systems
Neigel, Kathi and Andy
PCL Builders
Read, Elaine
Red Deer and District Community Foundation
Red Deer County
Saunders, Ken
SMS Equipment
Worley Industrial Services

Community Partners
Alexander First Nation
Fort McKay First Nation
Fort McMurray Metis Nation Local 1935
Grande Prairie CAREERS Advisory Group
Inside Education
Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo CAREERS Advisory Group
Skills Canada Alberta
South Eastern Alberta Partners for Youth Career Development
Women Building Futures
Work Wild

Education Partners
Edmonton Catholic
Separate School Division
Edmonton School Division
Fort McMurray Roman Catholic Separate School Division
Fort McMurray School Division
Keyano College
Lethbridge College
NorQuest College
Red Deer College
University of Alberta

Event Partners
Alberta Health Services
Alberta Pacific Forest Industries
Alstar Oilfield Contractors
Bird Construction
Construction Labour Relations An Alberta Association
Fidelity Machine and Mould Solutions
Go Auto
Kinesis Physiotherapy
LPS Crane Services
Martin Deerline
PTW Energy Services
Syncrude Canada

Employer Partners
482 employers investing in youth providing paid internships to students enrolled in CAREERS programs.

Board Matching Campaign Donors  Pledged $650,000

Lead Gift – The Newell Family
Jim Carter and Lorraine Bray
Curtis Clarke
Michael Colborne
Andre Corbould
Marvin and Shirley Dul
Doug Fingland
Andy Fraser
Heather and Douglas Kennedy
David LeMay
Bernd and Angela Manz
Brian McConkey
Jerry and Leslie McPherson
Sheila O’Brien
Kristin Romeril
Sandra Sutter
John and Leslie Wilson
Gord Winkel
Donavon Young
Drew Zieglgansberger
Kathi & Andy Neigel (President & CEO)