SAINT JOHN, New Brunswick, March 28, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- J.D. Irving, Limited (JDI) is partnering with New Boots – Progressing Women in Trades and the Government of New Brunswick to provide career opportunities for 10 women interested in the Skilled Trades Exploration Program for Women (STEPW). Ten (10) women interested in becoming a skilled tradesperson will be chosen for an apprenticeship across several JDI businesses. The chosen participants will attend 12 weeks of job readiness training at New Brunswick Community College (NBCC) in Saint John and will then be provided with a position and a mentor in a JDI business. After attaining the required 1800 apprenticeship hours in the business, the participants will move on to block release to achieve journeyperson status with JDI support.

A job posting for the 10 openings will be posted from March 27 to April 21 on the JDI careers website. Interviews will be held April 22 to April 25 and offers will be made on the 26 of April. Successful participants will begin training at NBCC mid-May and commence on-the-job training at JDI in August. Block release will begin in January 2020. Women who have recently graduated high school, are currently in the workforce and want the opportunity to reskill, or who are currently in a trade program, are all eligible to apply.

“JDI has been supportive of our work since our launch in 2018,” Says Helene Savoie-Louis, Director of Map Strategic Workforce Services. “It’s wonderful for us because JDI has so many different skilled trades within their different divisions. This gives us access to an employer that is committed to diversifying their workforce and providing women the opportunity to progress in their chosen career, which is skilled trades.”

In addition, JDI will be sponsoring this year's New Boots Annual Summit which will be held at the Delta Marriott in Saint John on April 11, 2019. The event will focus on retention and recruitment of women in skilled trades from both an employer and tradeswomen perspective. Employees and employers will come together to experience the day which will include a guest speaker, an industry panel, a problem-solving workshop, and an educational workshop.

“New Boots is doing vital work, promoting skilled trades opportunities for women in New Brunswick. J. D. Irving, Limited is pleased to sponsor the New Boots Progressing Women in Trades Annual Summit and to partner with them in creating the Skilled Trades Exploration Program for Women," explains Colleen Baxter, Vice President of Human Resources with JDI.  “We're doing our part to keep New Brunswickers home and encourage more women into skilled trades.”

JDI forecasts 7,500 full time hires over the next three years and over 700 of those roles are for skilled trades. By partnering with and sponsoring New Boots it encourages women in non-traditional roles and empowers the younger generation to pursue an unconventional career path.

To learn more about the New Boots Annual Summit and how to attend please go to: https://www.nb-map.ca/. To learn more about the Skilled Trades Exploration for Women program please call: 506-658-8282 and to apply please go to: https://careers.jdirving.com/jobs/skilled-trades-exploration-program-for-women-11382?et=1KZWl6WDd

About New Boots: Progressing Women in Trades: 

The New Boots: Progressing Women in Trades is a provincial network and resource hub that aims to promote, support and mentor women in non-traditional skilled trades, such as: construction, maintenance, automotive, truck and transport.

New Boots started in 2015 as a research initiative and was created to promote and increase the participation of women in non-traditional skilled trades apprenticeship in New Brunswick. Since then, New Boots has closely followed registered female apprentices in the province from nine (9) different skilled trades to better understand the challenges women face when entering a non-traditional skilled trade.

About J.D. Irving, Limited:

Established in 1882, J.D. Irving, Limited. (JDI) is proud to call New Brunswick home. The company is comprised of a diverse group of enterprises, spanning agriculture, construction, consumer products, food, forestry, retail, shipbuilding and transportation. With a team of over 16,000 full time employees across Canada and the United States, JDI employs best practices, continuous improvement and innovation to deliver top tier products and services every day.

JDI strives to make a positive difference in its communities in terms of growing jobs, safeguarding the environment and giving back to communities where employees live and work.

Media Contact:

Mary Keith
Vice President Communications
J.D. Irving, Limited
(506) 650-8209
(506) 632-5122
keith.mary@jdirving.com