Career Readiness

Employer Connections

Connecting school to the world of work.

Employer Connections is a program that connects educators and employers, creates work-related learning experiences, provides opportunities for career exploration and encourages increased enrollment in STEM-related courses – all to better prepare high school students for tomorrow’s careers.

Employer Connections features programming options such as World of Choices career exploration events, as well as coding initiatives.


About the Program


Despite increasing graduation rates, many Canadian youth find themselves unemployed for prolonged periods of time or under-employed in jobs that do not match their qualifications. In Ottawa, the youth unemployment rate is double the adult rate. Students need to understand the job market, develop skills that employers need, and make informed education and career choices. In addition, research has shown that 70% of the top jobs in Canada require a STEM-related education, yet less than 50% of high school students complete senior STEM courses.


STEM EDUCATION:  High school teachers in schools across Ottawa’s four public school boards are working with employer volunteers  to co-develop and deliver learning projects that demonstrate how STEM skills can be used to solve real-world problems. Volunteer mentors visit classrooms to work with teachers on experiential learning activities with the goal to inspire students to continue senior-level STEM studies.

CAREER EXPLORATION: ONFE works with community partners to provide teachers and students with current labour market information.  Also, ONFE organizes World of Choices career exploration events for students where local employers can talk about their work, education, and career pathways.


The Employer Connections program has connected school to the world of work for 2,000 high school students in Ottawa through innovative projects developed by teachers and industry experts, workplace visits, problem-solving activities, and roundtable discussions with employers. Employer Connections is helping students make informed education and career choices.

You Can Help Students Succeed

Help students connect classroom learning with real-world problems and issues. Your donation will help high school students learn more about the job market, develop skills for tomorrow’s careers, and inspire them to complete senior STEM courses.

Our Volunteers Get Things Done

Working professionals, recent graduates, retirees, students, and other community-minded individuals volunteer to help bring the Employer Connections program into schools across Ottawa. Our volunteers are central to our mission to support student success.