Attraction and retention of apprentices and completion of apprenticeships are issues of concern to all stakeholders involved in training, economic development and workforce planning. The Canadian Apprenticeship Forum (CAF) has forecast that by 2017 there will be a need to train 316,000 workers to replace the retiring workforce in the construction industry alone (CAF, 2011a). In the automotive sector, shortages are expected to reach between 43,700 and 77,150 by 2021. However, shortages are already widespread across the sector, and CAF survey data show that almost half (48.1%) of employers reported that there was a limited number of qualified staff in 2011 (CAF, 2011a). Given this, retention of qualified individuals in apprenticeship training and supporting them through to completion is a serious issue. There is some indication that registration in apprenticeship programs has been increasing steadily over the past few years, but the number of apprentices completing their program has not kept pace (Kallio, 2013; Laporte & Mueller, 2011). Increasing the number of completions would result in a net benefit to both apprentices and
employers, minimizing joblessness and skills shortages.