The NL Workforce Innovation Centre partnership with The Conference Board of Canada and Business + Higher Education Roundtable expanding work-integrated learning in Canada

The Newfoundland and Labrador Workforce Innovation Centre (NLWIC) is excited to continue its partnership with The Conference Board of Canada (CBoC) and Business + Higher Education Roundtable (B+HER), which was launched this summer, as they proceed to roll out their national project to improve and expand work-integrated learning (WIL) in Canada.

Key outcomes of the project include assessing and supporting the recruitment, training, and future talent needs during our country’s economic recovery from COVID-19 and achieve 100 per cent WIL by 2028.

NLWIC’s role in the partnership is two-fold: to identify and invite employers and post-secondary institution representatives in the province to register for any or all of the seven virtual stakeholder meetings and focus groups scheduled for a national audience this fall; and, to co-convene two of these meetings, specifically Canada’s Entrepreneurship Ecosystems and WIL, and the Digital Technology Sector and WIL.

This project is exploring perspectives around the nine main types of WIL, including: apprenticeships, co-ops, internships, professional practice arrangements, field experiences, applied research projects, service learning, incubators, and boot camps. It is also examining existing and required resources to support employer participation in WIL and analyzing the needs, barriers, and enablers of small- and medium-sized employer (SME) participation in WIL.

Finally, the project is examining the labour market capacity for WIL and the factors that determine employers’ ability to hire and train post-secondary students. Based on Canada-wide consultations, the project will develop the tools and resources that small- and medium-sized companies need to provide quality WIL experiences to students.

For more information on this project, or to participate, please visit the following link.



“As the country recovers from COVID-19, Canada’s businesses will need access to a pool of talent with experience and career-ready skills. That’s just one reason why work-integrated learning is so important. This past summer, our project in partnership with the Business-Higher Education Roundtable, along with incredible convening partners like the NL Workforce Innovation Centre, brought together employers from across the country to help us better understand how we can expand work-integrated learning, especially for small- and medium-sized enterprises. Our virtual summer events were enormously successful. We look forward to building on that success this fall and to continuing to learn from participants in Newfoundland and Labrador and the rest of Canada.”

Matthew McKean
Director of Education and Skills
Conference Board of Canada  


“Our mission is to create opportunity through collaboration, and this is a perfect example of partners working together toward a common goal of enhancing participation in quality work-integrated learning (WIL) across Canada. This research project, which focuses on Canada-wide consultations with small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), will inform the development of an online WIL Resource Hub with the tools and resources needed to support more employers in participating in WIL. Partners such as the NL Workforce Innovation Centre are integral to ensuring we have the right voices at the table as we develop the tools and resources needed to support successful WIL opportunities.”

Val Walker
Chief Executive Officer
Business + Higher Education Roundtable


“The NL Workforce Innovation Centre (NLWIC) is eager to continue our partnership with The Conference Board of Canada (CBoC) and the Business + Higher Education Roundtable (B+HER) to help advance work-integrated learning (WIL) in Newfoundland and Labrador and throughout Canada. Building on our role this summer, we’ll promote and invite entrepreneurs, employers and post-secondary representatives in the province to a series of virtual sessions; two of which we’ll co-convene throughout September and October. We share our partners’ position that Canada needs talent with practical experience and future relevant skills to remain competitive, and that one of the most promising approaches to meeting this need is expanding access to WIL in order to achieve 100 per cent participation in Canada by 2028.”

Sharon McLennon
NL Workforce Innovation Centre