Advanced Education, Skills and Labour

Skills Development

Skills Development Program provides financial support to EI-eligible individuals who are seeking full-time post-secondary training, for duration of 12 weeks or greater or short-term training of less than 12 weeks at a public or private training institution.

Individuals who participate in Skills Development may be required to make a financial contribution towards the cost of their training.

Program Information

Skills Development program provides assistance to individuals who clearly identify barriers to employment and a willingness to discuss options to remove these barriers.

These individuals must have participated in employment planning with officials of the Department of Advanced Education, Skills and Labour and an employment plan must be developed at a local Employment Centre.

For more information, please see Skills Development Fact Sheet pdf (97 KB)

Eligibility Information

Client Eligibility

  • Be a resident of Newfoundland and Labrador;
  • Be Canadian citizens or permanent residents entitled to work in Canada;
  • Have an active employment plan that is linked to the post-secondary education being pursued;
  • Sign a Client Consent Form to allow for the exchange and/or release of information;
  • Meet the definition of an EI insured participant; and
  • Be deemed to have made the transition from school to work. This means that the individual must have been out high school for a minimum of two years. During that two-year period, the individual must have been working or looking for work.

Other criteria may apply.

Training Eligibility

  • In Newfoundland and Labrador, training institutions must be registered, in keeping with provincial regulations and standards. If a private training institution is offering a course that is 50 or more instructional hours, that institution is required by law to be registered.
  • All training supported through Skills Development must lead to a certificate, diploma or degree.
  • Be full-time, except for training supported through the fee-payer policies where the client can cover the tuition and other costs himself/herself and only needs to continue to receive EI Part I benefits to cover living expenses.
  • Skills Development program agreement cannot exceed three years in duration. An academic upgrading/ABE intervention can be supported for three years, followed by a skills training intervention for another three years.
  • There is no minimum duration on the length of a training program that can be supported under the Skills Development Benefit.
  • Training institutions are required to provide details of training specific costs to the Department by completing the Program Cost Form.

How to Apply:

  • Applications for Skills Development must be received by the local Advanced Education, Skills and Labour office at least four weeks prior to the start date of the training program. However, for programs commencing in September, applications for Skills Development must be received at least six weeks prior to the start date of the training program. The date your completed application is received by the Department of Advanced Education, Skills and Labour is the date when you are considered to have requested assistance.
  • Applications received after these timelines may not be processed.
  • Any request for funding under Skills Development must be approved by the Department of Advanced Education, Skills and Labour before you begin your training program.

Contact Information

Advanced Education, Skills and Labour Office Locations

General enquiries: 1-800-563-6600

TTY: 1-866-729-4685


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