In recognition of Yukon College’s mobile trades training trailer

Mr. Silver:   I rise on behalf of the Liberal Party and the Official Opposition to pay tribute to the students participating in the first round of mobile trades trailer pre-apprenticeship certification in Dawson City.

According to the Yukon College’s website the Centre for Northern Innovation in Mining’s trades training trailer allows Yukon College to deliver trades courses in smaller communities across the territory as well as in operating mine sites. The state-of-the-art facility is just this week completing the examination process for its first round of participants for classes in welding up in Dawson City. I had the pleasure of being asked to say a few words at the ceremony at the Tr’ondëk Hwëch’in community hall for students last Friday and I wouldn’t have missed that opportunity for the world.

Not only does the college do an amazing job of promoting this programming to the population at large, but there were students of my age from Dawson who participated and used this facility and received their pre-apprenticeship certification. Not only did the college more forward on dual credit courses, partnering with Robert Service School, but they also provided programming options for some of our more marginalized students. For that, I cannot thank them enough.

In my speech last Friday at the ceremony, I asked these students to reflect on why it was this particular program that worked. Everyone who started, finished this program. Was it because of the instructor, Ed Bergeron, and his ability to inspire? Was it the state-of-the-art facility itself? Was it the overwhelming support from the Tr’ondëk Hwëch’in education department or the amazing efforts of Chief Taylor to ensure that Dawson was the first to host this mobile trades trailer? Whether it was any or none of these things, I encouraged the students to believe that the success is theirs to own — it comes from inside — and to use this confidence to continue down that road toward successfully developing their skills and also toward defining themselves as extremely valuable contributors to our community by filling important jobs in our territory and economy.

I spoke with Chief Taylor this morning and he wanted me to mention that this is the first time that a welding course was ever offered in the Klondike Valley and he looks forward to more opportunities with the College for us to continue to run our own economy in the Klondike Valley. He wanted me to mention that it is the leadership of Yukon College President Karen Barnes that helps to build these partnerships in the communities — that shows a lot of leadership. During the ceremony, a lot of the Yukon College folks were mentioning how happy they were with Chief Taylor’s advocacy, so it is good to see that he is also giving that back to the college as well — a true partnership.

I would like to congratulate the inaugural class of the pre-apprenticeship graduates. Jayme Favron — who is a local celebrity and is appearing on history channels Yukon Gold  with Karl Knutson’s crew — also, Jake Duncan, Marvin Frost Junior, Jay Gagnon, Aaron Mendelsohn, Waylin Nagano, Jesus Panaligan, Andrew Taylor, and, jack of all trades, Spencer Wallace.