For most applicants, a career with BC Ferries tends to start on a temporary or part-time basis. The majority of work open to the public starts as on call shift personnel who handle everything from customer service aboard a ship, to attendants in terminals. Covering a spectrum of work on both land and sea, BC Ferries is one of the largest employers in British Columbia. Shore-based positions require that applicants be at least 16 years of age, and hold a valid drivers licence.
For oceanic operations however, requirements include being 18 years of age or older, with certain key certificates. To work aboard a ship as a deck hand with BC Ferries (or any maritime company in BC), you are required to carry MED (Marine Emergency Duties) certificate. However, to work aboard BC ferries, all positions fall under the requirements of the Transport Canada Bridge Watchman Certificate which when taken through the Western Maritime Institute contains:
Steering Testimonial attesting to the applicant’s ability to steer a vessel.
After the candidate has provided Transport Canada with the above prerequisites, the candidate must succeed a written examination conducted by a Transport Canada Examiner to receive the Transport Canada Bridge Watch Rating Certificate of Competency. The entire course is 360 hours long and is designed for Entry level seafarers, however it does require that you already have a valid Seafarer s Medical or signed WMI waiver form as well as be 16 years of age to apply for these certificates.
For more information from the Western Marine Institute you can go to their web page about the Transport Canada Bridge Watchman Certificate, clickhere.
BC Ferries also offers a number of industrial jobs to those with mechanical training and certificates. For those not interested in working on a ship, but rather in maintenance and repair, B.C. ferries is constantly looking for people who can keep the many ships that they operate up to date, and fully functioning.
These jobs however require considerably more experience 3-5 years of engineer experience for most of them, as well as a valid Transport Canada Motor Certificate which varies depending on the level needed for the job. For information about Transport Canada and where they operate on the west coast, you can find a full list of there offices here.
For information on the other positions that BC Ferries offers and what those jobs require, click here, and for all the current opportunities across BC’s coast, click here.
Are you currently an apprentice or interested in becoming an apprentice?
Are you an employer/sponsor interested in hiring an apprentice?
ITA (Industry Training Authority) is coming to town to help you out!
Shannon Hanson, Apprenticeship Advisor for Powell River (and other areas) is visiting Powell River at Vancouver Island University’s campus 7085 Nootka Street #100, Powell River, BC V8A 1K6 on the following dates and times:
Thurs, March 5th (9am to 11:30am)
Thurs, March 26th (9am to 11:30am)
Thurs, April 23rd (9am to 11:30am)
Thurs, May 28th (9am to 11:30am)
Thurs, June 25th (9am to 11:30am)
Thurs, July 23rd (9am to 11:30am)
Sandy Elvy is organizing this up at VIU, and may be contacted at Sandy.Elvy@viu.ca or call Mon/Friday 8:30 – 4:30
Phone: (604) 485-8027, Local 8027
You may also reach Shannon Hanson, CCDP (Apprenticeship Advisor for North and West Vancouver, Upper Squamish, Pemberton, Whistler, Mt. Currie, Sechelt and Powell River) at Industry Training Authority www.itabc.ca; ITA Customer Support 778 328 8700 or Toll Free in BC 1 866 660 6011
Haedy Mason a life skills worker at the Powell River Community Resource Centre (CRC), who runs the Shift Happens program there, was able to sit down with Career Sense and give us a little more of her story. Haedy moved here during 2014 from Vancouver to start a brand new job that she found through last year’s Career Link Job Fair. I asked her if she would be willing to spare a moment of her time in order to answer some questions for Career Sense.
CS: How did you first come into contact with the CRC and the rest of career link?
HM: During the 2014 Job Fair I became aware of Career Link’s off site programme, which was focused towards community accessibility, a program which I believed strongly in.
CS: What is the Shift Happens program?
HM: Shift Happens is a 12-week life skills pre-employment program that focuses on a strength-based approach that assists people facing multiple barriers to employment. The program aims to help individuals build on their strengths, and helps to organize them to achieve success in a work environment. It also focuses on life skills that will have an effect both in a work space, and in the day to day personal lives, while helping them to build their self-esteem. The program is open to anyone who is 19-65 years of age who are currently unemployed with barrier s to employment. The next intake begins March 19th, 2015, and the next 12 week program starts April 2nd.
CS: What qualities do you believe helped you to succeed in this field?
HM: I have had extensive training in asset based community development, and I truly believe that if you can find someone’s strength and put them in the right environment, they will flourish. I also have a 30 year long career of looking at what is right within a community, and how people are supported within it.
CS: What struggles have you had to face in starting the program, and coming to work in a new town?
HM: My personal struggle is that I had a 10 year long break in my employment due to health reasons, and finding an employer who was willing to let me work was difficult. Career Link however gave me a lot of freedom at the start. I know what I can do, and I know what I do well and I was excited to do it for the Powell River community.
CS: What would you define as your biggest success within Career Link?
HM: I very quickly became attached to the community of Powell River and the belief behind community development is that you are enriched by your community by enriching it. Doing for myself what my job requires has allowed me to live and work where I am most passionate and in what I believe in the most. That is my greatest success.
CS: Is there any advice you would share to those looking for work within the Powell River community?
HM: Talk to everyone you know about your dreams, practice describing your perfect job to yourself and anyone who will listen. Always carry a positive attitude and hopefulness. CS: This year marks the second annual Career Link Job Fair, Thursday March 19th 2015, and it will run from 11am to 2pm, Haedy will be in attendance to start up the next intake of her program. For any additional questions you may have in regards to her program Shift Happens, you can contact her at the email Haedy@prcr.org or call the Shift Happens office at 604 485 0927
What a year it has been, but it has already been a year! We are planning our 2ND Annual Career Link Job Fair and wanted to offer you the opportunity to book a booth for this event. There is no cost for attending and this year promises to be bigger and better.
The boldest feedback we received from both employers and job seekers at the Job Fair last year was “Bigger venue, more space and more employers!” We have heard that loud and clear, so this year we will be using the Recreation Complex and will present all the employers in one session.
Word got back to us that lasting connections were made last year and that employers found good staff and some job seekers secured jobs. If you are one of the success stories we have yet to hear, please share your find from the Job Fair.
Mark your calendars for…
Thursday March 19th
11 – 2pm at the Recreation Complex
(5001 Joyce Ave.)
There will be time for setup and takedown before and after and a light lunch available.
Employers will be required to register so please contact Rob Hughes directly with the name of the representatives from your organization (email@example.com) or call 604.485.7958
We look forward to seeing you and making this an even more successful event.
It’s been 2015 for a month now and hopefully we’ve all recovered from overindulging this holiday season. I know it took me a while to get over my turkey-induced stupor. Now that our heads are clear, what next?
If your plan for the new year includes looking for a job or changing your career, one of the first things you’ll need is an up-to-date résumé. Resume writing has changed a lot since I was fresh out of school and applying for jobs. They’re no longer chronological listings of experience and education—they’re sales documents. In the new world of short attention spans, if your resume doesn’t catch an employer’s eye in eight to 10 seconds, it’ll go straight into the recycling bin.
So how do you make your resume stand out? Here’s a chance for you to get creative and even have some fun. For example, a former co-worker of mine used to glue triangles of brightly-coloured fabric to the top right corner of her resume so that human-resources people would notice it immediately as they flipped through the pile. This won’t work in the days of electronic job applications, but there are all kinds of new ways that you can make your resume stand out. Here’s a quick list of the most popular advice from online job search websites and recent blog posts:
One size doesn’t fit all – always tailor your resume to fit the job posting.
Design matters – make your resume stand out visually by using such things as pull-out boxes, colour, shading, clearly-defined sections, etc.
Keep it to one or two pages – no one reads more than that anyway.
In fact, some experts say that employers only look at the top third of your résumé, so make it count by using a “highlights” section of three or four bullet points at the top of the document.
It’s all about getting things done, so use active words to describe your achievements. Examples: managed (instead of “selected as supervisor”), created a database (instead of “a database was used”), completed project (instead of “the project was completed”).
Generic statements are a waste of space – include information that is unique to YOU.
Review your resume from the point of view of an employer (or ask a trusted friend to look at it for you) – how easy is it to identify skills relevant to the job you’re applying for?
Email your resume as a PDF – because you never know how badly someone else’s Word default settings will mangle your formatting.
Spell check, spell check, spell check! Because no one will take you seriously if you don’t. I can’t tell you how many résumés I’ve tossed out because the applicant didn’t pay attention to detail.
Tips for job seekers age 50+:
Age proof your resume by including only the last 15 years or so.
Don’t include dates but, rather, use a functional resume describing skills and achievements (this is good advice for anyone, but especially so for older job seekers).
Describe how you’ve used technology in your work, and what it has helped you accomplish. If you have nothing to say, you have some work to do!
Tip from left field:
Create a short video introduction of yourself and link to your resume. Here’s an example: