Women in Trades Training

Funding is available to help women receive funding in one of two pathways:

Info Session - Tuesday, December 7, 2021, at noon. Learn more about the info session

Trade Discovery Programs – 12 week non-credit program

These career exploration programs will expose you to different trades and career options, with a focus on safety, skills upgrading, and enhancing your job readiness. You'll experience hands-on learning opportunities, safety training, and career mentorship, and site tours with industry employers. You'll develop a resume, practice interview, and job search skills, and enhance team-building experience.

Program Framework

Students will receive exposure to a variety of trades that may include:

  • Automotive Mechanics
  • Carpentry
  • Electrical
  • Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Mechanic
  • Welding

Students will also receive certificate training that may include: 

  • Confined Space
  • Fall Protection
  • Food Safe
  • Occupational First Aid Level 1


At this time we will be offering hybrid delivery of TDPs with both online training and face-to-face sessions for the following semesters:

  • Spring 2022 Semester in Cowichan, starting January 2022

We are currently accepting applications for both programs on an ongoing basis.


Tuition is fully funded for eligible applicants. Vouchers for personal protective equipment (PPE) where applicable.

How to Apply

Determine your eligibility, found in funding requirements.

Send a one-page letter of intention to include:

  • Your eligibility as per the funding requirements
  • Description of why you are interested in the program, and what your future career goals are
  • Description of your past work, and educational experiences
  • Include phone and email contact info

For more information and to send your completed letter and a copy of your resume, please email: Amanda.Aust@viu.ca

Once your eligibility is confirmed, the Coordinator will be in touch via email to arrange an appointment.

Program Coordinator: Amanda Aust |  Phone: 250-748-4529 Ext. 3532 | Email: Amanda.Aust@viu.ca


Trades Foundation Program

VIU Women in Trades Training offers sponsorship for eligible and selected women in their pursuit of becoming a tradesperson by supporting Foundation training at the university.

Program Framework

Course outlines are trade-specific.  Please see VIU Trades and Applied Technology for more details.


Women in Trades Training Foundation sponsorships may include full tuition, textbooks, and personal protective equipment (PPE) where applicable.

Admission Requirements

To apply for WITT sponsorship for Foundation programming at VIU, applicants must have the prerequisites for that particular program. Check the Admission Requirements tab for any of Vancouver Island University's Trades Foundation program (pre-apprentice programs) and their respective prerequisites.

How to apply

Apply to a Trades Foundation program at VIU.

Once you have received confirmation of enrollment from registration, send a one page letter including:

  • Your eligibility as per the funding requirements
  • Your reasons for entering a foundation program and career aspirations
  • A description of work history and educational experiences
  • Phone and email contact information

For more information and to send your completed letter and a copy of your resume, please email: Amanda.Aust@viu.ca

Once your eligibility is confirmed, the Coordinator will be in touch via email to arrange an interview.


Program Coordinator: Amanda Aust |  Phone: 250-748-4529 Ext. 3532 | Email: Amanda.Aust@viu.ca 

VIU Women in Trades Training Program student

Margaret O'Neill

"My final exam was on a Thursday and my first day at my new job was the next day!! I was hired by Subzero Heating and Cooling and I'm thrilled to start working in the trade. Thank you all for your dedication to my learning and helping me achieve these goals. I would not have been able to get this far without your help. The opportunity to be in this program has changed my life. I'll make you proud out there in the field and encourage other women to take the leap too."


Refrigeration Air Conditioning Mechanic program graduate