Empowering Futures Eligibility & Resources

The Empowering Futures Program is Canada’s Student Work Placement Program for the electricity industry. Aimed at preparing students and first-year apprentices for the future of work, the program will create new work-integrated learning (WIL) opportunities in electricity by providing subsidies of up to $10,000 per student or apprenticeship position to the employers who create these new opportunities.

Funding For Futures is a new intuitive and easy-to-use platform launched on July 28th that takes users through a step-by-step application and documentation process in an interactive, web-based environment when applying, monitoring, and managing their wage subsidy application.

Access Funding For Futures

ECO Canada Apprenticeship Service

Eligibility Update (as of April 1, 2022)

We are returning to “net new” criteria. To show the impact of this funding program, EHRC is required to track the number of students an employer hired in the past, before they receive EHRC Empowering Futures funding.

Approval will be granted for positions that are deemed greater in number than the fiscal year (April to March) before a given employer entered the program for the first time. This will be defined as the baseline number of students hired and only students hired in greater numbers will be eligible for funding. If an employer hired fewer students in one of the years from April 2020 to March 2022 – that will instead be used as the baseline number.

To receive a financial incentive for hiring a first-year apprentice in a construction or manufacturing Red Seal trade, the employer must be a Small or Medium Enterprise (SME) a business establishment with 499 employees or less at the time that it receives funding.

Each SME may receive funding for hiring a maximum of 2 new first-year apprentices per fiscal year.

Eligible construction/manufacturing Red Seal trades are:

  • Construction
  • Boilermaker
  • Welder
  • Steamfitter/Pipefitter
  • Construction Electrician
  • Sprinkler Fitter
  • Gasfitter A
  • Gasfitter B
  • HEO Dozer
  • HEO Excavator
  • Mobile Crane Operator
  • Construction Craft Worker
  • Tower Crane Operator
  • Powerline Technician
  • Ironworker Generalist
  • Ironworker Reinforcing
  • Ironworker S/O
  • Manufacturing 
  • Boilermaker
  • Welder
  • Steamfitter/Pipefitter
  • Machinist
  • Tool and Die Maker
  • Metal Fabricator (Fitter)
  • Industrial Electrician
  • Industrial Mechanic (Millwright)
  • Instrumentation and Control Technician

Subsidy Reimbursement for Students:

  • The standard subsidy reimbursement is 50% of the student’s gross paystubs, up to a maximum of $5,000.00 per placement
  • The increased subsidy reimbursement is 70% of the student’s gross paystubs, up to a maximum of $7,000.00 per placement

Those eligible for increased subsidies are:

  • First year students
  • Women in STEM
  • Newcomers to Canada
  • Persons with Disabilities
  • Indigenous Peoples
  • Those who identify as a member of a visible minority group

Financial Incentives for new first-year apprentices in one of the construction or manufacturing Red Seal Trades: 

  • The standard financial incentive is $5,000.00 per placement
  • The increased financial incentive is $10,000.00 per placement 

Those eligible for increased subsidies are:

  • Women
  • Indigenous People
  • Newcomers to Canada
  • Persons with Disabilities
  • Visible Minorities
  • LGBTQ2+
Post-Secondary institutions are no longer eligible to receive funding.


Contact Us

If you have additional questions about Empowering Futures, you can contact us at the following:

Yoana Turnin, Project Manager
t 613.235.5540 ext. 243

Eligibility Requirements

Eligibility is dependent on the participant, employer (organization-wide) and nature of employment.

Questions? Please email Yoana Turnin at turnin@electricityhr.ca

Participant Eligibility

Participants are eligible if they meet the following criteria:

– They are registered as a full-time or part-time student in a post secondary institution or they are a first-year apprentice in one of the construction or manufacturing Red Seal trades.

– They are a Canadian citizen, permanent resident, or person with refugee protection in Canada.

– They are legally able to work in Canada according to the laws and regulations of the province or territory where they live.

Organization Eligibility

Organizations are eligible if they meet the following criteria:

– Firms whose primary activity is the generation, transmission and distribution of electricity.

– Sector support including renewables, in any of the following areas: R & D, business development, energy efficiency.

– Firms engaged in manufacturing of equipment and the provision of services necessary to generation, transmission or distribution.

– To receive financial incentives for apprentices, employers must be a Small or Medium Enterprise (SME) a business establishment with 499 employees or less at the time that it receives funding.

Employment Eligibility

Employment is eligible if it meets the following criteria:

– The wages for this position must not be funded by another federally funded program.

– To receive financial incentives for apprentices, the employer must not enter into another Sub-Agreement with any other organization receiving funding under the Apprenticeship Program  within the same fiscal year, for the purpose of receiving a financial incentive.

– The company must provide a full or part-time work opportunity for a student in post-secondary education, enrolled in a science, technology, engineering, mathematics, arts, or business program, or a first-year apprentice in one of the aforementioned Red Seal trades.

– The wage subsidy covers the cost of a co-op student’s salary by up to 70% to a maximum of $7,000.

– The financial incentive for apprentices is up to $10,000 per apprentice.

– Each SME hiring an apprentice, can receive funding for a maximum of two apprentices per fiscal year. 

– The company must not recruit and retain friends or family members as participants to the co-op wage subsidy program, or have a sufficient nepotism policy in place.

– The company must reference Funding For Futures to inform potential participants what their involvement in the co-op wage subsidy program will entail.

– The company must provide proof of placement employment, start date, contract with participant, full wage, and benefits of the participant, as well as any other information about the placement to EHRC upon request.

– The company must develop a Formal Learning Plan with the participant, before the start of the placement.

– The company must provide EHRC with monthly financial claims and progress reports for each student.

– For apprentices, the company will receive the financial incentive in the beginning and end of the placement.


Resources & Additional Information:

The Student Work Placement Program (SWPP)

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