Options Youth


If your business is interested in hiring a participant and benefiting from $10,000+ in funding, please fill out the application below. If you have any questions please contact OptionsYouth@smu.ca


Next intake will begin in Spring 2022. If you are interested in hearing more please contact OptionsYouth@smu.ca

Options Youth is a virtual employment wage subsidy program funded by Service Canada and facilitated by the Saint Mary’s University Entrepreneurship Centre. It consists of paid, online, milestone-based skill training, followed by a paid work placement. Options Youth is committed to helping youth overcome barriers to enter the workforce through personalized training to participants and federal wage subsidies to employers in Nova Scotia.

For Employers:

  • 700 hour wage subsidy, covering up to $12.55/hr plus MERCs, up to a maximum of $9,818.
  • Additional support, as required, throughout the program to participants and employers to provide the best possible experience


For Participants:

  • Personalized training and mentoring to participants using our online platform
  • Participants earn an allowance of over $2,600 while completing the online skill training

  • Support and coaching

Employer Requirements:

  • Hire a participant that has completed the online program
  • Small- and medium- size business in Nova Scotia
  • Place the participant on payroll (invoice Options Youth each month)
  • Provide monthly reports to the Project Manager

Participant Requiements:

  • A Case Manager (Employment Worker, Social Worker, Probation Officer, etc.)

  • Between the ages of 15-30

  • Canadian citizen, permanent resident or protected person as defined by the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act

  • Legally entitled to work in Nova Scotia

  • Facing barrier to employment

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