Fostering strong community partnerships underpins all of the work we do.
Without our partners in business, labour, education and community services, the research we conduct would not be as relevant and as accurate as it needs to be to develop an effective and viable workforce. These strategic relationships enable us to conduct research, publish our findings, and execute community consultations and events. Below is a list of partnership projects to be completed during 2012-2013.
Partnership Projects: 2012-2013
Junior Achievement in partnership with the Sarnia Lambton Workforce Development Board held their Pitch It! event on Tuesday, Janaury 15, 2013 at the Best Western.
Students from the Junior Achievement Program pitched their business ideas to a panel of business experts. The grand prize was a multi media package donated by Blackburn Radio, Sun Media and Lambton Shield.
The successful Jr. Achievement team developed a company called "Sarnia Sights".
Sarnia Sights was sponsored by Suncor Energy Ltd. The company was ultimately run by 24 high school students, with the assistance of volunteer advisors from Imperial Oil and Suncor Engergy. Sarnia Sights offers both ready made and custom made coasters which can be used for display and advertisements and has a Sarnia "sight" on each of them. This product can appeal to any age group depending on what you want on the product. Sarnia Signts has sold almost 200 products since its inception in October 2012. The company program will run until April 2013. Sarnia Sights also set up at the Lambton Mall on Saturday February 9th for the final trade fair promotion.
The company can be viewed on facebook at https://www.facebook/SarniaSights
Skills Work Camp
The week of July 16 – 20 held a summer skills camp for students going into Grade 7 & 8 in September. Students were introduced to construction, machining, culinary, alternative energy and horticulture through tours and hands on workshops.
Partner Recognition and Thanks: Skills Canada, Lambton College, DeGroot's Nurseries, Home Depot, Shelley Machine & Marine, Carpentry Union Local 1256 and Canadian Tire.
Workshop Targeting Tourism as an Economic Driver
Host a workshop to discuss the importance of developing the areas tourism and hospitality industry which includes restaurants and retail owners by collaborating as a community to provide a good “experience’ when tourists are visiting the community.
Youth Entrepreneurship Conference
Youth Conference to engage secondary school students to think about starting their own business within the community.
Hire Immigrants – Increase Cultural Diversity in Workplace
Business Luncheon to profile success of hiring immigrants and to encourage more employers to hire foreign trained workers.
Workforce 2020 Strategies
In order to accomplish the task of creating a culture of entrepreneurship the Strategy 1 Committee has begun work in a number of areas. First, the Committee has begun to research and create a directory of those resources available to companies and individuals that provide funding and support to entrepreneurship and innovation – including programs run by local, provincial and national organizations and governments. The Committee has also begun to investigate the role – or potential role – of angel investors in the Sarnia Lambton community. In terms of training, the Committee is researching entrepreneurship and innovation programs and training that currently exist within Sarnia Lambton – with a particular interest in those programs that encourage staff to be entrepreneurial and innovative within the company to produce new products, new markets, or better ways of doing business.
In the future, Strategy 1 Committee will be planning and implementing training workshops to fill identified gaps, and will create a strategy for promoting entrepreneurship in Sarnia Lambton – both to existing companies and aspiring individuals.
The purpose of Strategy 2 Committee is to develop a pipeline of students to become the next generation of entrepreneurs and entrepreneurial workers. The Committee subsequently decided that while the definition of “students” is open to interpretation, the Committee itself would be – at least initially – concerned with youth rather than lifelong learners.
This Committee is committed to making information pertaining to entrepreneurship programs more accessible. As a result, the strategy is currently working to create a catalogue of those entrepreneurship programs that are available to youth in Sarnia Lambton, with the intention to produce a document that is publicly available. The Committee is also currently engaged in developing strategies to improve participation rates in two youth entrepreneurship programs that are currently available in Sarnia Lambton – the Company Program offered by Junior Achievement and the Summer Company Program offered by the Sarnia Lambton Economic Partnership. The goal is to build on those underutilized programs that currently exist in the community before creating something new.
In the future, the Strategy 2 Committee will be working to identify gaps in the available entrepreneurship programming for youth with an eye to filling those gaps, and will be creating a marketing strategy to encourage innovative and entrepreneurial thinking in Sarnia Lambton’s youth.
The Strategy 3 Committee has been tasked with promoting career opportunities to Sarnia Lambton’s current and future talent base. This strategy is working to build a better understanding of the roles and responsibilities of the various employment-related organizations in Sarnia Lambton, support new tools for individuals in Sarnia Lambton to identify employment opportunities and find new ways of training the talent base for higher skill employment.
The Strategy 3 Committee has only just begun its work, having recently reviewed an action plan with a view to understanding those needs that have already been addressed and identifying those that still need to be addressed. The Committee is also currently sharing information to build a stronger network in order to assist with finding career opportunities in Sarnia Lambton. An asset map, which will provide a resource to help individuals find information about training, employment resources, and potential employers, has been developed with input from the Strategy 3 Committee. The members of the Committee have also agreed to partner on the initiative to establish a School of Environment in Sarnia Lambton to provide unskilled and at-risk youth with useful and marketable skills.
In the future the Strategy 3 Committee is committed to strengthening the Specialist High Skill Majors program and the Leaders in Schools program, working to make LiveinLambton.com the premiere online job board in Sarnia Lambton, and producing career pathway profiles to guide individuals to their chose career.
Strategy 4 Committee is primarily concerned with expanding the participation of students and incumbent workers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) disciplines. From the outset this Committee has been primarily concerned with students.
As of today, the Strategy 4 Committee is working on a single project – but what a project! The Committee has committed to hosting a STEM event for secondary school students from across Sarnia Lambton. This event will serve to introduce grade ten students to opportunities in STEM before they begin making important education decisions – specifically, before they select their courses for grade eleven, which is the first year in which they are able to choose whether or not to take science courses.
In the future, Strategy 4 Committee will work to find further opportunities to provide STEM-related opportunities to both youth and the general public, including planning educational events and investigating opportunities to build STEM awareness into school programming and curriculums.
The Strategy 5 Committee is responsible for finding opportunities for small and medium-sized businesses and trade unions to access more customized education and specialized training resources.
This Committee has begun in earnest by researching the training needs of local businesses and unions. This research began with informal one-on-one interviews with members of the business community, and will continue with the distribution of a survey to businesses and unions from throughout Sarnia Lambton.
After the survey results are received, the Strategy 5 Committee will analyze the results to ascertain the community’s training needs, and begin to work within the Committee and with other community partners to provide that training. The Committee has also made a commitment to support other events that fit within the Strategy 5 mandate.
This Committee has begun a two-pronged approach to expanding awareness. First, Committee members have been approaching representatives of the petrochemical industry in Alberta to introduce the education and training services that can be found in Sarnia Lambton, and to investigate opportunities for Lambton College students and graduates. Second, the Committee is approaching Ontario biofuel companies in order to evaluate training needs in that emerging industry while promoting Sarnia Lambton’s unique combination of leadership, experience and education in fuel-related and green industries.
The Strategy 6 Committee is currently working to identify further opportunities to promote Sarnia Lambton’s education and training resources at conferences and to build closer relationships with companies in the petrochemical and biofuel industries.