Merit provides industry-leading benefits, quality education, and unwavering advocacy to meet the needs of our members.
Enhance your employees’ well-being with portable benefits tailored exclusively for the open-shop construction industry and its partners.
Sharpen your skills and stay competitive at Merit College of Construction. High-quality education and scholarships that encourage a skilled, competitive and robust construction workforce.
As provincial policies continue to shift, we stand firm in our mission to elevate Canada’s open shop construction industry. Our mission is to develop a regulatory and business environment that not only supports open shop principles, but a spirit of open and transparency in the construction industry as well.
Our Scholarship provides assistance to children of Merit member employees pursuing post-secondary education, including apprenticeship technical training. The $1,500 Merit scholarship can be awarded to post-secondary students in any year of their current program, with a maximum of one application per student during their schooling. The scholarship applies to any accredited post-secondary institution.
Federal grants are available to journeyman and Red Seal apprentices and are regulated by each province and territory within its own borders. Apprentices in designated trades must be registered with the provincial and territorial regulatory body and are subject to standards and training requirements set out by governing legislation.
To see if your employees qualify please see below for requirements/applications per province.
104 – 13025 St. Albert Trail
Edmonton, Alberta T5L 4H5
The Merit Contractors Association Scholarship provides assistance to children of Merit member employees pursuing post-secondary education, including apprenticeship technical training. This scholarship can be awarded to post-secondary students in any year of their current program, with a maximum of one application per student during their schooling. While this scholarship is not necessarily given out based on academic standing, there are a limited number of spots and Merit reserves the right to reject applications based on the number of applications we receive. The total sum awarded per person for the scholarship will be $1,500. The scholarship applies to any accredited post-secondary institution.
Submit the following by March 31, 2022, to Merit National:
** Incomplete applications will not be considered.
Canadian apprentices in skilled trades are eligible for federal grants and loans while in technical training, in addition to supports that may be offered by their province or territory.
Apprenticeship Incentive Grant for Women
The Apprenticeship Incentive Grant for Women is a taxable cash grant of $3,000 per year/level (or equivalent) up to a maximum amount of $6,000 per person.
Apprenticeship Incentive Grant (AIG)
The Apprenticeship Incentive Grant (AIG) is a taxable cash grant of $1,000 per year or level, for a lifetime maximum amount of $2,000 per person.
Apprenticeship Completion Grant (ACG)
The Apprenticeship Completion Grant (ACG) is a one-time taxable cash grant lifetime amount of $2,000 per person for registered apprentices who complete their apprenticeship training and obtain their journeyperson certification.
Canada Apprentice Loan
The Government of Canada offers apprentices registered in Red Seal Trade apprenticeship program up to $4,000 per period of technical training. The loan is interest-free for up to 6 years and can be used up to 5 periods of technical training.
Apprentice Mechanic Tools Expenses
Even though an apprentice may have already claimed the tradesperson’s deduction for tools, he/she may also be able to deduct a part of the cost of eligible tools purchased to earn employment income as an eligible apprentice mechanic.
Tradesperson’s Tool Deduction
Allows employed tradespersons to claim an annual tax deduction of up to $500 to help cover the cost of new tools necessary to their occupation.
Every trade has specific educational requirements apprentices need to meet, including Alberta high school entrance requirements. If the individual cannot provide documentation of having met the requirements, they may be accepted as an apprentice but must successfully complete the applicable entrance exam before being scheduled for technical training. Apprentices register through Alberta Apprenticeship and Industry Training (AIT).
Youth and Pre-Apprenticeship Programs
SAIT, NAIT and Red Deer College offer a list of pre-apprenticeship courses.
Registered Apprenticeship Program (RAP) allows high school students to participate in an apprenticeship program while they are still attending school. Through a flexible schedule, RAP apprentices earn hours of on-the-job training and work experience as credit towards their apprenticeship program, and their high school diploma.
Career and Technology Studies (CTS) Apprenticeship Pathways courses that make students eligible to write an exam for advanced standing in the first period of technical training for each trade.
In August 2020, the base tuition fee per week increased in Alberta. For most apprentices in an eight-week session, total fees will still be under $1,000 ($840 for tuition and $72 for materials/service fees). Apprentices also pay for books, parking, student association fees, facility fees, material, and consumables during their technical training.
Canadian Government Grants for Alberta include:
Scholarships AIT provides more than 1,900 scholarships to apprentices each year to assist them in completing their apprenticeship education programs.
Pre-apprentice Scholarships encourage those completing pre-apprenticeship training to continue in the trades and complete their programs. Introduced in 2008, Pre-apprentice Scholarships are valued at $1,000 each and are donated by the industry.
Merit Contractors Association of Alberta reimburses tuition fees for field employees of Merit members.
The Canada-Alberta Job Grant is a training program where an employer applies on behalf of their present or future employees for eligible training costs. Employers decide who gets training and what type of training may be needed for their employees. Funding is provided by the Government of Canada through the Workforce Development Agreement.
In BC, apprenticeship training is delivered through a partnership of the Industry Training Authority (ITA), public or private training institutions, and employers. To complete the training and become a qualified certified tradesperson in BC, apprentices must complete on-the-job hours and in-school training, pass examinations, and earn the recommendation of a sponsoring employer.
Trades Training BC provides information on the wide range of training programs offered at 14 public post-secondary institutions in BC. The site provides start and end dates for programs and programs are listed by location and job postings.
Education Planner BC allows you to compare BC’s post-secondary options, including apprenticeship programs.
Youth and Pre-Apprenticeship Programs
Discover, Explore, Train and Work represent the four levels offered through the K–12 system across the province. The ITA in BC gives youth exposure to skilled trades careers starting in elementary school.
The Youth Train in Trades is an industry partnership program for high school students, with trade classes offered at colleges, high school, or training facility. Students can earn credits that count towards their high school diploma and Level 1 technical trades training.
WorkBC Financial Supports for Apprentices include living away allowance, dependent care, transportation, travelling for training, disability related costs, and living supports for basic expenses.
The BC Provincial Training Tax Credits provide income tax credits for employers and employees who are engaged in apprenticeship programs administered through the ITA.
Employment Insurance apprentices registered with the ITA may be eligible for temporary Financial Supports while they attend ITA approved training for their apprenticeship. The Employment Program of British Columbia (EPBC) provides employment services and supports to apprentices and delivers it through a network of WorkBC Employment Services Centers (ESC’s).
The B.C. Employer Training Grant (ETG) replaces the Canada-B.C. Job Grant, and is funded through the negotiated Workforce Development Agreement. This program is designed to assist employers in providing skills training to new or current employees that will develop skills and certification, upgrade skills needed due to automation and enhance productivity.
Trades are classified as either compulsory or voluntary in Manitoba. When a trade is deemed compulsory it requires the individual to register as an apprentice or already be a certified journeyperson to work in the trades in province.
Apprenticeship in-class training is done at both the Red River and the Assiniboine College.
Youth and Pre-Apprenticeship Programs
High School Apprenticeship Program (HSAP) lets students start their apprenticeship training while enrolled at a high school. Combining regular high school instruction with part-time on-the-job paid employment/training, credit will be granted toward post-secondary apprenticeship program.
Youth Build is a job training and pre-apprenticeship program whereby young people are working under the supervision of a journeyperson to renovate homes and develop building skills. Young people can attend the Youth Build Program full time, as an alternative to school. In Manitoba, there is a 30 hour per week paid vocational component and a 10 hour per week unpaid academic component.
Financial Supports for Apprentices and Employers The Manitoba Government covers the major portion of tuition fees for apprentices when they attend technical/in-school training. This provides apprentices the opportunity to pay much lower tuition fees in comparison to most other post-secondary options.
Merit National provides tuition reimbursement to its members who complete apprenticeship training and return to work for a Merit member.
The Canada-Manitoba Job Grant is an employer-driven approach to help Manitobans gain the skills they need to fill available jobs and to help employers develop the skills of their existing workers to meet the requirements of their present job, or to move into a better job.
The Apprenticeship, Trade and Occupation Certification Board (ATOCB) provides advice and links the department and industry, facilitating a strong partnership leading to qualified apprentices and a skilled workforce in the NWT.
Schools North Apprenticeship Program (SNAP) is a work experience program for NWT high school students. It provides students who are interested in skilled trades with a way to gain valuable work experience while also attending high school and earning credits.
Skills Canada NWT promotes careers in skilled trades and technology to northern youth through school presentations, youth conferences, skills competitions, extracurricular skills clubs, marketing projects and more. Skills Canada NWT supports community-based skills clubs by helping with the cost of tools, equipment, and materials, and by sharing information between coaches.
Skills Club are after-school activities for students in grades 9 through 12, although some communities may offer the clubs to a broader age range. Adults in skilled trades and technology careers volunteer their time to share their knowledge with youth through specialized skills clubs. The type of skills club depends on the volunteers and community, but may include hair styling, welding, baking, plumbing, electrical wiring, graphic design, carpentry, and more.
The Canada Northwest Territories Job Grant is a cost‐sharing program that helps employers offset the cost of training for new or current employees. The Grant helps Northerners gain the skills they need to fill available jobs; it helps employers invest in their workforces, equipping workers with the training necessary to make their businesses succeed.
Canada-Yukon Job Grant (CJG) is a program administered by Labour Market Programs and Services, Yukon Education as part of the Canada-Yukon Job Fund. The program is intended to provide employers with funding support to train existing or potential staff for specific, existing, or projected positions in the labour market. Eligible employers are required to contribute a minimum of one-third of the total training costs. Government contributes two-thirds of the cost to a maximum of $10,000 per trainee.
When a potential apprentice and an employer enter into an apprenticeship agreement, an application package must be completed, signed, and submitted to the Nova Scotia Apprenticeship Agency. Pathways for apprenticeship is direct-entry (employer required) or pre-employment training programs (employer not required).
Workit is a youth apprenticeship initiative for high school students under the age of 20.
Options and Opportunities (O2) offers students more hands-on learning experiences with a career focus. It is designed to prepare students for successful transitions from high school to work, a career path, or a post-secondary program.
Enrolment in a Nova Scotia Community College (NSCC) pre-apprenticeship program allows students to learn entry-level skills and trade theory in preparation for employment in the trade. After completing the program and finding an employer in the trade, the student will enter into an apprenticeship agreement with the employer through the Nova Scotia Apprenticeship Agency.
Through a partnership between NSCC and the Nova Scotia Apprenticeship Agency, graduates of pre-apprenticeship programs at NSCC obtain advanced standing for theoretical and practical training in articulated programs once working in the trade with an employer and are registered as an apprentice.
On September 5, 2017, Labour and Advanced Education Minister, Labi Kousoulis, announced the removal of tuition fees for apprentices attending technical training in Nova Scotia. Making training more affordable will enable more apprentices to earn their certification, increase their earning potential and take full advantage of opportunities in the province.
Nova Scotians are also encouraged to apply for the below awards and grants:
The Department of Family Services’ Apprenticeship Unit supports skilled workers and apprentices on their way to becoming journeypersons either with or without their Interprovincial Standards Red Seal certification. The Apprenticeship Unit also certifies eligible trade occupations. The Unit is governed by the Apprenticeship, Trade and Occupations Certification Act and makes decisions based upon recommendations of the Nunavut Apprenticeship, Trade and Occupations Certification Board.
The QIkiqtani Inuit Association in partnership with Baffinland and the Government of Canada are working on ongoing skills development and training in the Qikiqtani region. As part of this project, they are recruiting people interested in a career in the skilled trades for the Q-STEP apprenticeship training program. Funded in part by the Government of Canada’s Skills and Partnership Fund.
Nunavut Arctic College 1-year diplomas are offered at Nunavut Arctic College in Pre-apprentice programs for Housing maintainer, carpenter, plumber, electrician, and oil heat systems technician. These programs aim to give learners the knowledge, skills and confidence requires to enter an Apprenticeship program.
Skills Canada Nunavut offers a variety of trades and technology programs and activities for youth and hosts free events throughout the year by partnering with schools, governments, and industry leaders in communities across the territory.
Financial Assistance for Nunavut Students (FANS) is designed to ensure that financial need is not a barrier to higher education. It is for students attending designated post-secondary institutions and academic programs. FANS offers several benefits that are intended to help offset the costs of a post-secondary education. Student categories include Nunavut Beneficiaries, Nunavut Residents with Nunavut Schooling, and Nunavut Resident without Nunavut Schooling. Basic Grants can be up to $6,855 for tuition, books and fees depending on the program.
Under the Canada-Nunavut Job Grant (CNJG), eligible employers can receive funding support if they have new or better positions available for trainees and they can contribute to the total eligible training costs for each designated trainee. The maximum government contribution to the grant is $10,000 per trainee.
To start an apprenticeship in Ontario you must qualify, find an employer (or sponsor), apply for an apprenticeship, sign a training agreement, and register with the Ontario College of Trades. For the in-class training apprentices will register for courses by contacting the Ministry of Colleges and Universities.
Ontario Youth Apprenticeship Program (OYAP) is a School to Work program that opens the door for students to explore and work in apprenticeship occupations starting in grade 11 or grade 12 while earning Cooperative Education credits.
Specialist High Skills Major (SHSM) programs are available in 19 sectors and lets high school students in grades 11 and 12 focus on a career path that matches their skills and interests while earning their Ontario Secondary School Diploma.
Apprenticeship Scholarship is available through Employment Service providers and provides up to $1,000 to support individuals who require academic upgrading to meet the eligibility requirements for their chosen trade.
Loans for Tools program provides loans for apprentices to purchase essential tools or equipment for their training program.
Support for Non-EI Eligible Apprentices during In-School Training this initiative provides up to $1,500 of taxable financial supports for apprentices who attend full-time in-school apprenticeship training and are not eligible for EI.
Apprenticeship Completion Bonus in Non-Red Seal Trades this bonus is a taxable cash grant of $2,000 available to apprentices after they complete their apprenticeship training and obtain their C of A and, where applicable, their C of Q, in any Ontario non-Red Seal trade.
Tool Grant a new, non-repayable tools grant is available for apprentices (as of August 2020). The amount of the grant depends on which trade sector being apprenticed. The grant amounts are $1,000 for motive power sector trades, $600 for construction sector trades, $600 for industrial sector trades and $400 for service sector trades.
Canada-Ontario Job Grant (COJG) provides opportunities for employers, individually or in groups, to invest in their workforce, with help from the government. The grant provides direct financial support to individual employers or employer consortia who wish to purchase training for their employees. It is available to small, medium, and large businesses with a plan to deliver short-term training to existing and new employees.
Most in-school training can be done on PEI and is delivered on behalf of Apprenticeship by Holland College. In some trades, in-school training is done at an off-Island post-secondary school.
Workplace Skills Training provides Islanders with opportunities to obtain or increase their education and skill levels to match labour force requirements. Employers will receive financial assistance to provide training to unemployed, underemployed, or employed workers. Training must be short term and meet job-specific and incremental industry requirements of the organization.
Workforce Experience financial assistance will be provided to local employers to provide on-the-job-training and mentoring for new full-time employees. These investments should result in well-trained and productive employees who are able to contribute to the success of the business.
Workforce Development Projects are collaborative partnerships to enhance the labour market participation of eligible participants by assisting them to prepare for entry to or return to employment or obtain or keep employment or maintain skills for employment.
Youth Apprenticeship Program (ASAP) Youth Apprenticeship is for students wanting to explore their trade career options and gain a head-start on the post-secondary apprenticeship training program while working toward their grade 12 diploma.
Digital Skills 4 Youth PEI Is a new internship opportunity for Island youth delivered by the Department of Economic Growth, Tourism and Culture with funding support from Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada. The program will focus on connection recent graduates to meaningful employment and giving them the skills to succeed in the digital economy.
Tuition for apprenticeship in-school training is fully sub-subsidized through SkillsPEI. Apprentices may also be eligible for travel costs.
Apprenticeship Incentive Grant (AIG) – Level 1 and Level 2
A $1000 federal grant available to registered apprentices when they complete level 1 and another $1000 grant when they complete level 2.
Employ PEI is an employment program developed to help employers create long term employment opportunities for job seekers. An employer receives a temporary wage subsidy to provide on-the-job training for a new full-time employee.
Training in Saskatchewan is a structured system of supervised training leading to certification in one of Saskatchewan’s designated trades. Apprentices spend approximately 85% of the time working on the job, learning the knowledge and skills associated with a trade from a certified journeyperson. Remaining time is spent in theoretical and technical in-school training, which reinforces and expands on what is learned on the job. Training ranges from two to five years depending on the trade. Once complete the final level of training, they are eligible to write the journeyperson examination.
Prairie Arctic Trades Training Centre is the training provider for the Scaffolding, Lather (Drywall and Acoustic Mechanic) and Roofer trades in Saskatchewan under contract to the Saskatchewan Apprenticeship and Trades Certification Commission (SATCC).
Saskatchewan Polytechnic provides the in-school portion of apprenticeship training for 20 apprentice able trades. Technical training provides students with theory, testing and hands-on experience. It is available in Regina, Moose Jaw, Saskatoon, and Prince Albert. Technical training is also available in cities in other provinces (for some trades).
Youth and Pre-Apprenticeship Programs
Saskatchewan Youth Apprenticeship (SYA) Industry Scholarships are valued at $1,000 and awarded to selected, eligible high school graduates throughout the province who have completed the SYA program and will be pursuing a career in the skilled trades. Students are nominated for SYA Industry Scholarships each April by selected provincial high schools.
Tuition fees are increasing by $10 per week, from $95 per week to $105 per week for most programs.
Saskatchewan Graduate Retention Program (GRP) provides a tax rebate up to $20,000 to graduates that remain in Saskatchewan and file a Saskatchewan income tax return.
The Canada-Saskatchewan Job Grant is an employer-driven program that helps businesses and non-profit organizations train new or existing employees for available jobs; and provides more opportunities for unemployed and underemployed workers to receive training.
There are no compulsory trades in Yukon, apprentices are not required to have journeyperson certification to work. The apprenticeship office processes Certificates of Qualification under the Apprenticeship and Trades Qualification Act.
Apprenticeship training can be done at:
The Department of Education also offers supports to get through apprenticeship such as a psycho-educational assessment, tutoring or learning assistance, technology, and support for learning disabilities.
Yukon Secondary School Apprenticeship Training program allows you to work in a trade part-time during the school year and full-time during the summer. The working hours can count towards apprenticeship requirements while the students earn their high school diploma.
A pre-apprenticeship for trades programs is also available through Yukon College & Yukon University:
Yukon Grant students can receive up to 170 weeks of funding over their lifetime. They must continue to meet eligibility requirements. The Yukon Grant is calculated on a weekly basis. For the 2020–21 academic year, the Yukon Grant will pay $144 per week of study. They will receive the Yukon Grant in lump-sum payments. For example, if a student studies from September to April inclusive, the school year is 34 weeks long.
The calculation is 34 weeks x $144 per week = $4,896.
Travel Amount Students going to school outside of the territory may be eligible for an annual travel amount of $1,500. Students from Yukon communities may also be eligible for an extra travel amount.
We are proud to announce Merit’s Mental Health Strategy.
This program will keep mental health at the forefront for Merit members, their employees, and families.
We have made available to our members resources to assist in navigating mental health issues in the workplace and at home.