Nunatsiaq Online
NEWS: Nunavut December 30, 2015 - 4:00 pm

Nunavut’s new employment skills program produces first grads

Program designed to start moving students away from income assistance

NUNATSIAQ NEWS
G.R.E.A.T. graduates Tedd Nattaq, Thomassie Ishulutak and Lisa Panniluk celebrate the completion of the 12-week employment skills program in Iqaluit Dec. 22. (PHOTO COURTESY OF THE GN)
G.R.E.A.T. graduates Tedd Nattaq, Thomassie Ishulutak and Lisa Panniluk celebrate the completion of the 12-week employment skills program in Iqaluit Dec. 22. (PHOTO COURTESY OF THE GN)

A new territorial employment skills program designed to help Nunavummiut transition from income assistance produced its first batch of graduates before Christmas.

Getting Ready for Employment and Training, called G.R.E.A.T. for short, was launched last September by the Department of Family Services and Nunavut Arctic College.

Now the program has 20 new graduates, following ceremonies last week in Kugluktuk, Iqaluit and Rankin Inlet.

The 20 graduates followed a 12-week program, including two-week job placements at different community employers. Students receive a training allowance while enrolled.

“This program has proven that Nunavummiut are keen to work, move towards financial independence, and make meaningful contributions to their communities.” said George Kuksuk, Nunavut’s minister of Family Services, in a Dec. 18 release. 

“Graduates can pursue more training and education, so they can transition off income assistance and get long-term employment.”

Last week, G.R.E.A.T. recognized 20 graduates in the three communities where the pilot project was offered in: Kugluktuk, Iqaluit and Rankin Inlet.

Family Services and NAC plan to offer the program in more communities starting in January 2016, including Arctic Bay, Pond Inlet, Igloolik, Iqaluit, Pangnirtung, Baker Lake and Gjoa Haven.

For more information on the G.R.E.A.T. program, click here.

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