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Wage subsidy program to continue for another year

Suzanne Thompson, Owner/Operator of Kootenay Therapy Center in Cranbrook, trains Joy Friesen, the summer student she hired last summer with funding support from CBT's Summer Works program.

By Rachel Lucas, Columbia Basin Trust

Columbia Basin students and businesses will be able to access the Summer Works program again in 2011, as the Board of Directors of Columbia Basin Trust (CBT) has approved the program for another year.

In addition, the program's budget will increase to $500,000, from $390,000 in 2010, allowing more students to be hired.

The Summer Works program provides Basin small businesses with wage subsidies to hire high school and post-secondary students, including mature students, enrolled in full-time education.

In 2010, the pilot program resulted in 112 summer jobs for students throughout the Basin: half for entry-level positions and half for career-related employment.

Of businesses that took advantage of the program, 90 per cent said they plan on applying again, and 99 per cent said they would recommend the program to other businesses.

The program will continue to be administered by College of the Rockies.

Information on the application process and timelines will be available in February 2011 at www.cbt.org/summerworks.

CBT delivers economic, social and environmental benefits to the residents of the Columbia Basin.

To learn more about CBT programs and initiatives, visit www.cbt.org or call 1.800.505.8998.