Wednesday, November 02, 2011

http://canadianimmigrant.ca/news-and-views/foreign-trained-engineers-could-fill-gaps-in-alberta-energy-sector/

 This is the result of the Conservatives ongoing plan to put Alberta talent into trade jobs and import the Engineers and Physicians from abroad.

A dozen years ago the Conservatives took advise they could not support "big business" in the province because of the lack of talent (volume) graduating from Alberta Universities.

They made the decision to freeze university funding at the 1986 levels (where they still are) putting enrollment out of reach of all but the wealthiest families in the province.  This plan was totally cemented when Ontario did away with their Senior Matriculation program graduating 2 years of students into 1 year.  Because of the lack of space in Ontario Universities many of the excess students found a university in Alberta and paid foreign enrollment fees.

The universities being short funded by the Province had to go after this more lucrative business and the infamous bell curve shot upwards into the high 90s and made room for the brightest from anywhere in the world and Albertans  were directed by default into trade schools.  Of these, some advertised University courses but, when completed they could not be rolled over to universities.  Another year was required at the university for the entrance.

More money was poured into the trade schools like NAIT and SAIT to teach industry designed programs for the resource industry.

The result was Albertans lost their choice as to whether they wanted a higher education or not.  They were efficiently channeled into the trade schools and Alberta embarked on a world wide program to attract foreign professions to the Alberta fold.

Much the same thing is happening now, for different reasons.  The Conservatives have pushed their Job Job glitz to anyone who would listen.  The World Crunch came and is still with us.  Make work programs were created to cover them through a new election which is imminent.

Under this program, companies are encouraged to drill wells.  They are reporting profits of a million dollars a hole whether or not the holes produce oil.  Before the profit is taken, any number of people are hired but some only get 1 week work out of every 3 weeks.   Hardly enough cash in the system to promote any trickle down effect!


The Conservatives have advertised aboard for workers to make the province appear that it is short of people.  Thousands have arrived from Texas and other oil states in the US to fill some of these positions and they too are taking short hours.  Because of loose tax collections they take home a larger pay than do the Canadian people.

The Conservative dream once again.  About 8 or 9 billion dollars a year going to the resource industry from taxpayer coffers and being taken up for a larger part by foreign workers while companies take home a million dollars for administration.


Edmonton-based Association of Professional Engineers, Geologists, and Geophysicists of Alberta (APEGGA) is  working with engineering bodies in Asian countries, Latin America and elsewhere to try to establish international mobility agreements that will smooth the way for engineers from countries there to qualify more easily to obtain certification in Alberta.

It has long had such an agreement with the United Kingdom. APEGGA is the body responsible for licensing all engineers in the province and for providing ongoing training, as well as working with government, industry and educators to promote the profession.
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-APEGA LOOKS FOR FOREIGN PROFESSIONALS! -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
As the Alberta economy shifts into semi-boom mode again, thanks to accelerated oilsands development and unconventional oil and gas expansion, there will have to be more engineers to design the plants and the infrastructure needed to accommodate that growth-and that worries executives with the provincial association that represents engineers.

In that regard, APEGGA has worked with the American Engineering Association, which has an examination it requires foreign-trained engineers to take to work in the United States. APEGGA also has a mentoring program, by which it matches newly arrived foreign-trained engineers with other foreign-trained engineers who have worked in Canada for a number of years.

The association has mulch-pronged strategy for dealing with the impending shortage.

One aspect of that strategy is convincing the federal government to allow more foreign-trained engineers to emigrate to Canada. The government has a reasonably aggressive temporary foreign worker program, aimed mostly at filling unskilled worker positions and some trades positions, but APEGGA doesn´t believe its program to allow in permanent trained immigrants is adequate.

It also wants to see the Alberta government bump up funding for engineer training at the University of Alberta and the University of Calgary, the two post-secondary institutions in Alberta that train engineers.
Read the complete story here
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