Type of Program:

Wage Subsidy


The Career-Ready with CTMA: Expanding Opportunities program provides non-repayable contributions to eligible employers to subsidize the wages of new hires or the upskilling of existing employees that meet the program eligibility. Funding is 30% of wages paid to a maximum of $3,000 for each experiential work placement.

Comments on Funding:

Funding is 30% of wages paid to a maximum of $3,000 for each work placement to assist with the cost of hiring and training.

Employers can receive funding for up to 12 candidates.

Employers must pay each placement an hourly rate of at least minimum wage (at least $14.25/hour) for the 10 to 16 weeks of the work placement.

Wage support from all sources, including the Co-operative Education Tax Credit, cannot exceed the total wages paid for any individual work placement.

When It Ends:



January 31, 2022


Applicants/employers must:

  • be licensed to operate in Ontario;
  • provide training in Ontario which is related to a job that is located in Ontario, comply with the Occupational Health and Safety Act and the Employment Standards Act, maintain appropriate WSIB insurance coverage; and
  • have adequate third-party general liability insurance;
  • be SMEs who are part of the Precision Metalworking Sector and whose primary business is focused on the design, manufacture, repair, or assembly of products in at least one of the following areas:
  • Tool & Die Manufacturing;
  • Mould Making;
  • Precision Machining;
  • Gauge and/or Fixture Building;
  • Additive Manufacturing / Rapid Prototyping;
  • Automation / Robotics Manufacturing;
  • Machine Tool Building;
  • Cutting Tools Sales & Services.
  • have a candidate before applying and have identified a job title with a corresponding job description;
  • hire each candidate on a full-time basis and pay them an hourly rate of at least minimum wage (currently $14.25/hour), and provide WSIB coverage.

NOTE: For previous participating companies, having 50% of their business serving the automotive sector is no longer a requirement. Priority will be given to members of the Canadian Tooling & Machining Association (CTMA); however, the program is open to all businesses in Ontario that meet the minimum threshold outlined above.

The candidate must be a residents of Ontario, be eligible to work in Canada, and meet one of the follow definitions:

  • New Apprentice – an individual who will be enrolled in a Registered Training Agreement (RTA) and will receive trades training as part of an apprenticeship program in the precision metalworking trades.
  • High School Graduate – an individual from an Ontario secondary school who has or will complete Grade 12 in 2021 or 2022 and is ready to explore the career opportunities available in the precision metalworking trades. This type of candidate is only eligible for a single placement. For multiple placements, see New Apprentice above.
  • High School Student – an individual who is currently enrolled in a high school technological education specialty program that is specific to the precision metalworking sector; who can work full-time (at least 35 hours per week); and is able to receive a wage of at least $14.25/hour. This type of candidate is only eligible for a single placement.
  • Displaced Worker – individuals who have been displaced from their previous career due to the COVID-19 pandemic and have an interest in starting a new career in the precision metalworking sector.
  • Upskill an Existing Employee – an existing employee who has been identified as a candidate to increase their skills that includes a distinct role change (i.e., unskilled labourer to an apprentice position; trades person to a designer, etc.).
  • Post-Secondary Graduate – an individual who has completed their academic program of study (minimum one-year) at a post-secondary institution in Canada.
  • Post-Secondary Co-Op Student – an individual who is currently enrolled in any diploma, certificate, or degree program, in any year of study, at a post-secondary institution in Canada.

Applications Steps:


Employer applications to the Career-Ready with CTMA program are prepared and submitted on behalf of employers by Mentor Works Ltd as a third-party organization.
To apply, applicants must fill out the online application form on Mentor Works web page or contact Jamie at or 1-888-599-3111 ext.114.
Candidates interested in being matched with an employer are invited to submit an application at CTMA and complete the program’s online screening and assessment process.

Other Things to Note:

  1. 1
    Due to tremendous response to this program, funding is extremely limited. Those interested in participating can be put on a waiting list by contacting Julie at
  2. 2
    Work placements will run from 10 to 16 weeks. Consecutive placements will be permitted if they can be completed by March 31, 2022.
  3. 3
    Applications will be accepted between April 1, 2021, and January 31, 2022, and will be assessed on a first come, first served basis.


About the author 


Maurice (Moe) Muise learned the ins-and-outs of government while an employee of the Government of Canada in Ottawa for 10 years. His current focus is helping small businesses in Ontario to identify and maximize government grants to grow their business.
Click here to learn more about Moe's background and how he can help your business.


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