Colleges and institutes to help newcomers better integrate Canadian workplaces

Ottawa, August 18, 2021 – Moving to Canada can provide many opportunities, but also comes with unique challenges for newcomers looking for meaningful employment. To better support newcomers, Colleges and Institutes Canada (CICan), today, launched Skills Enhancement for Newcomers, a two-year national initiative that will help newcomers develop the soft skills unique to Canadian workplaces, enhancing their employment profiles.  

The project is funded by the Government of Canada through Skills for Success, a framework developed by Employment Skills and Development Canada that identifies nine soft skills needed to participate and thrive in learning, work, and life. 

Through the project, CICan will bring together colleges and institutes – and their employer partners – from across the country to develop, implement, and deliver three new micro-credentials focused on Communication, Collaboration, and Adaptability, three of the skills identified by Skills for Success.  

Over two years, 1,000 newcomers will benefit from the short and flexible micro-credentials designed to supplement and enhance their existing professional skills and give them an understanding of how Canadian workplaces may differ from workplaces in their home countries. The micro-credentials, provided by publicly funded post-secondary institutions, will be recognized by local employers as Canadian experience, a common barrier to employment for newcomers. 

The program will also support Canadian employers by giving them access to a talent pool with intercultural and global skills. 

“In a globalized world, soft skills are an essential part of working together and across cultural differences and help ensure that our workforce in Canada is futureproof. Skills Enhancement for Newcomers will be a great opportunity for international newcomers, even those who are already highly-trained, to ease their transition into the Canadian workforce.” 

Denise Amyot, President and CEO, Colleges and Institutes Canada 


About Colleges and Institutes Canada: 

CICan is the national and international voice of Canada’s largest post-secondary education network. It advocates, builds capacity, and drives knowledge to strengthen Canada’s publicly supported colleges, institutes, CEGEPs, and polytechnics. With more than 95% of Canadians living within 50 km of a member institution, and thanks to its extensive reach around the globe, CICan works to future-proof communities in Canada and abroad. 

We respectfully acknowledge that CICan’s offices in Ottawa are located on the traditional and unceded territory of the Algonquin Anishinaabe Nation. 


Julien Abord-Babin
Senior Strategic Communications Officer
Colleges and Institutes Canada
Phone: 613-746-2222 ext. 3131
Twitter: @CollegeCan