As NBCC prepares learners for careers in their chosen fields, community and industry partners play a vital role. Whether they donate bursary funds or equipment, host workplace practicums, provide applied learning opportunities, visit classrooms as guest speakers or hire graduates, their contributions help make the NBCC experience extraordinary for students.
NB Power has long been a valued partner of NBCC andrecently received the NBCC Industry Award. Learn more about this mutually beneficial partnership in this Q&A with NB Power.
Describe your organization’s relationship with NBCC.
NB Power has an extensive history partnering with NBCC, including the recruitment of students from various technology and technician programs, hosting multiple practicum placements throughout the Province, supporting employer sponsored employee development through apprenticeship programs and piloting new programs together to meet our future energy worker needs.
How did this partnership come about? How long has your organization worked with NBCC?
NB Power has worked with NBCC for more than 25 years. As technology advances at our Generating Stations, our Nuclear Station, in energy efficiency and in the transmission, distribution and customer service sectors of our business, formal training requirements continue to evolve. NBCC has been responsive to our needs to ensure students have strong foundational learning helping them succeed in the energy worker profession.
How does this partnership benefit NBCC? How does it benefit your organization?
NB Power works closely with NBCC ensuring that we, as good corporate citizens, provide New Brunswickers with the training and necessary skills to plan for the future of energy in New Brunswick. Our partnership has positively impacted curriculum development and enhancement to new and existing programs, successfully supported the creation of new or pilot programs to meet new and existing job market needs and provided an opportunity to engage in open dialogue with industry partners regarding the challenges in meeting todays resource needs. Working together is a benefit not only for NBCC and NB Power but for all New Brunswickers.
What are the factors that make your partnership with NBCC successful?
Partnering together we have had the opportunity to customize successful programs to help us meet the current and future labour needs of the energy sector, such as, Utility Arborist, Powerline Technician and Nuclear Control Room Operator. NBCC has helped to make the recruitment process of students and student practicum placements much simpler for us as a New Brunswick employer. The student practicum placement program supports our ability to get to know students by observing their behaviors in the workplace prior to formally making an offer of employment to them. This is a great way for students to showcase their skills, abilities and workplace behaviors as well as NB Power’s opportunity to showcase what a great place NB Power is to work and how exciting the energy sector can be for students who will be transitioning into the workforce.
If your organization did not have a relationship with NBCC, what impact would it have on your operations?
NB Power would experience labour shortages for specialized skills in the energy sector. It is likely NB Power could be forced to supplement shortages by hiring resources outside the Province and rely on contracted resources at a higher cost to operations which may impact our ability to provide New Brunswickers with effective customer service. Without access to educated and trained students and resources NB Power’s succession and workforce planning efforts could be negatively impacted.
What personal history, if any, does NB Power employees have with NBCC?
NB Power is very proud to have NBCC alumni members working in many areas of the corporation proudly serving New Brunswickers as their partner of choice for energy solutions.
In addition, members of the NB Power Senior Management team have held various position on the NBCC Board over the past years.
As a leader in your industry, what advice would you give to students who are training for your field? What advice would you give NBCC in training them?
Students: In today’s competitive labour market education, skills and abilities are all important to showcase perspective employers. What many employers are also focusing on is demonstrated workplace behaviors which have become as important and/or more important to model in the workplace. A personal commitment to safety and following all safety protocols is as important when no one is looking as it is in front of a perspective employer. Attendance, positive attitude, accountability, initiative, respect etc. are important.
NBCC: Continue to train students with the integrity and commitment to practical skill development and application of knowledge that supports employment within the Province. Explore unique ways of responding to employer needs through regular curriculum review, understanding specific work requirements in different industry, entering into more pilot programs to respond to specialized needs and be open to feedback from clients.