Benefits of skilled trades and technology promoted in P.E.I.

Jim Day
Published on November 5, 2015

David Gormley, 19, of Bedford displays the bronze medal he won in cabinet making at the 2015 National Skills Competition in Saskatchewan.

©Jim Day/The Guardian

Building gives David Gormley great personal satisfaction.

He is a hands-on person who took well to carpentry, earning gold in a provincial skills competition while attending high school in Morell.

Gormley, 19, of Bedford has gone on to complete Holland College’s one-year cabinet making program in Summerside.

He is confident a good, secure, long-term livelihood lies ahead building cabinets.

Picking up bronze in cabinet making at the 2015 National Skills Canada Competition in Saskatchewan certainly boosted his confidence and offered reassurance he is on the right career path.

Currently working on a dairy farm, Gormley plans to begin his cabinet making apprenticeship this winter, with the hope of later earning his Red Seal, which would allow him to work anywhere in the country.

Gormley was on hand this week at Holland College in Charlottetown as Prince Edward Island Trades and Technology Week was officially proclaimed.

As part of a national initiative, Skills Canada and its member organizations will be promoting and hosting events throughout the week to raise awareness of skilled trades and technology careers to parents, youth, and the general public.

Holland College president Brian McMillan says great careers are available in skilled trades and technology with the added opportunity of a person starting his or her own business.

“The underlying demographics of an aging workforce in these occupational areas and the current rise in regional and national megaprojects indicate that there will be continued opportunity for our youth to find meaningful careers in these sectors,’’ said McMillan.

“P.E.I. has demonstrated growth in new sectors such as information technology, renewable energy, marine and aerospace, and Holland College is contributing skilled labour through our full-time program, flexible part-time learning, and contract training.’’

Workforce and Advanced Learning Minister Richard Brown announced a $500 prize to support a new Skills Canada P.E.I. contest.

The prize money will be used to support the purchase of new tools and/or equipment for the career and technical education programs at the winning school.

The contest encourages students in Grades 9 to 12 to design hands-on activities that demonstrate engagement in the skilled trades and technologies.

Registration forms are available at

For more information, contact Tawna MacLeod, executive director of Skills Canada P.E.I. at 902-566-9352 or