First Nations, Métis, and Inuit Initiatives

Kids playing at camp

Skills Ontario’s First Nations, Métis, and Inuit (FNMI) Initiatives aim to increase the awareness of FNMI youth in the rewarding career opportunities that exist in the skilled trades and technologies. Affiliated schools, Friendship Centres and Band Offices can access the following programs, tailored to local communities:

FNMI-focused Mentoring Events

FNMI-focused Student Conference

FNMI Career Awareness Workshops

FNMI Trades and Tech Days

FNMI-focused Summer Camps

Thank you to our FNMI Initiatives Sponsor:


FNMI-focused Mentoring Events

Our FNMI Mentoring Events are an opportunity for youth who identify as FNMI to meet, network, and share a meal with community members who have already chosen a career in the skilled trades and technologies. Youth learn about the journey of these mentors and explore their interest through hands-on activities. 

Upcoming Mentoring Events   (Dates and locations will be added as they are confirmed)

DATE      LOCATION      
February 15, 2017    Sudbury    FLYER  
February 21, 2017    Sault Ste. Marie    FLYER   REGISTER
February 23, 2017    Sault Ste. Marie (Trades and Tech Day)    FLYER   
March 15, 2017    Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory     FLYER   REGISTER
 April 19, 2017    Kenora    FLYER  REGISTER

 Mentorship Opportunities Available


Aboriginal youth working on a project

FNMI-focused Student Conference

Beginning in 2016, Skills Ontario hosts a community gathering specifically for FNMI students at the Skills Ontario Competition (formerly the Ontario Technological Skills Competition). This event helps youth understand the rewarding career options in the skilled trades and technologies, while celebrating a shared cultural heritage and the success of FNMI youth across Ontario.

This conference offers FNMI youth in grades 7-12 the opportunity to be inspired by mentors who have already chosen a career path in the skilled trades and technologies, and while exploring the Career Exploration Showcase at the Skills Ontario Competition, Canada’s largest skilled trades and technologies competition.

FNMI Student Conference 

May 2, 2017

Toronto Congress Centre






School/Youth Registration:

Unless otherwise advertised, all students attending from the same school/organization must be registered together by a main contact (e.g. board contact or teacher). By registering students for this event, non-affiliated schools or organizations agree to cover the costs associated with affiliation.

Your registration request will be responded to by a Skills Ontario staff, who will confirm your participation status.

To be allowed to participate, each attending student must submit a complete, signed waiver at the event.



FNMI-focused Summer Camps

Exploring the skilled trades and technologies, one hands-on activity at a time

Some locations of our Skills Ontario Summer Camp program are offered specifically for FNMI youth. Visit the Skills Work! Summer Camp page for more info.



Register a Guest

A guest is classified as a dignitary, community partner or other interested party who is not part of a school registration. 

Guest Registration


Becoming a Mentor

Are you a skilled trade or technology professional who identifies as First Nations, Métis, or Inuit? Volunteer as a mentor at one of our events!

Mentor Flyer


Mentor Registration


FNMI Career Awareness Workshops

Opportunities in the Skilled Trades and Technologies

The FNMI Initiatives program tailors the Skills Work!® “What’s Out There in the Skilled Trades and Technologies?” presentation to a hands-on workshop with culturally relevant information. This workshop is designed to educate students on the hundreds of career opportunities available in the construction, motive power, service, industrial and technology sectors. This interactive, 45-60 minute multimedia hands on workshop is updated annually.

Workshops regarding career opportunities in the skilled trades and technologies are available in communities, cultural gathering places, and in schools.  Skills Ontario’s FNMI Workshop brings the topic of skilled trades and technologies to the forefront and encourages young FNMI people to consider and test out their hands-on abilities.

During the workshop, youth, unemployed and underemployed and educators have the opportunity to:

  • Discover the benefits of careers in the skilled trades and technologies
  • Take a visual tour of the skilled trades and technologies that interest them: with topics such as median salary, description of the role, what qualities, education and training a worker should have; students are encouraged to look for a career that fits their desired lifestyle, personality and interests
  • Learn about the steps to apprenticeship, as well as other pathways to a career in the skilled trades
  • Find out how to acquire skills and experience
  • Understand the importance of employability skills in the workplace and how these skills can easily make or break a job opportunity
  • Access further resources and determine how to get started on a path that is right for them

Supported by Union Gas, the Ministry of Advanced Education and Skill Development, Skills Ontario’s FNMI Workshops are the perfect complement for all career exploration or development courses.

 Book your workshop  


FNMI Trades and Tech Days

The Far North “Trades and Tech Day” is an interactive, career exploration event for elementary students in Northern Ontario. Because access to events such as the Skills Ontario Competition can be more difficult for students in Northern Ontario, this event provides them both with the information of our in-school presentation program and the opportunity to participate in hands-on workshops. For more information and current dates, visit the Trades and Tech Day page.