In the words of Nelson Mandela, “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.” We embrace this belief and want to increase access to education for Albertans, for a more prosperous future.
The challenges we need help solving:
- How might we positively influence and increase high school graduation rates and post secondary enrollment in Alberta?
- How can we best prepare Albertans for employment by building skills of the future to strengthen and diversify Alberta’s economy?
Recent initiatives and partnerships
MindFuel is an education technology leader focused on invigorating the minds of tomorrow by bringing STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) to life, both inside and outside the K-12 classroom. With the goal of helping to spark curiosity and fuel inspiration in the innovators of tomorrow, MindFuel has reached over 147 million students and teachers across the world.
The skills encouraged through MindFuel often include STEM innovation, design thinking, entrepreneurialism, computational thinking, nanotechnology, robotics, synthetic biology, energy and the environment. Students have worked on projects tackling issues such as climate change, food insecurity, waste reduction and more. By developing solutions in these emerging areas, Alberta's youth are empowering our province to succeed for generations to come.
We continued our partnership with NPower Canada, whose mission is to reduce poverty in Canada by launching low-income, diverse young adults ages 17-30, into IT careers. The workforce development programs that NPower provides are designed to equip Alberta youth—including those who have been disproportionately impacted by the pandemic—with technology and IT skills.
In 2021, 263 Albertans enrolled, with 86% successfully graduating and 82% of graduates either securing employment or pursuing further education in a related field. NPower continues to scale their operations in Alberta, which now includes a presence in Calgary, Edmonton, Red Deer and Lethbridge.
Windmill Microlending provides microloans to skilled immigrants and refugees to gain Canadian accreditation and restart their careers in Canada. Immigrants and refugees often arrive in Alberta with valuable professional expertise but, due to barriers in gaining professional accreditation, they often turn to low-wage, survival jobs to provide for themselves and their families. With a microloan to pursue exams, courses, and resources for accreditation, our clients are able to lift themselves out of poverty and earn a livable income.
Since our partnership with Windmill Microlending in 2006, they’ve provided more than $6.5 million in microloans to help skilled newcomers to Alberta pursue the accreditation needed to continue their careers here. In 2021, ATB’s support assisted 10 additional Albertans. We are now expanding our partnership with Windmill, giving ATB team members the opportunity to support Alberta’s newcomers as mentors.