Nova Scotia increases subsidy for businesses hiring diverse grads

The subsidy is part of the Graduate to Opportunity program that provides salary contributions for eligible businesses that hire recent graduates.

 The province is increasing the subsidy available for businesses that hire women, those with disabilities, and diverse recent graduates.

The move is part of a change to the province’s Graduate to Opportunity program that provides salary contributions for businesses that hire recent graduates, a release said Tuesday.

The program covered 25 per cent of a salary for the first year, and 12.5 per cent in the second.

Tuesday’s announcement provides an additional 10 per cent, 35 per cent total, in the first year for diverse hires. This includes women in a non-traditional occupation, persons self-identified as having a disability, racially visible persons, aboriginal persons and international graduates.

“This program has created meaningful career opportunities for hundreds of talented new graduates,” said Premier Stephen McNeil in a release.

The program started in 2015 as part of the government Make It Here initiative, aimed at creating opportunities for young Nova Scotians.

“Graduate to Opportunity and other programs like it are part of our strategy to train our youth, keep them home and support the economic growth of our province,” said McNeil.

Eligible businesses must have fewer than 100 employees, be a recent start-up, or a not-for profit, social enterprise or recognized registered charity. The created job has to be full-time with a minimum salary of $30,000 and require the employee to live and work in the province.

Eligible graduates have to complete a post-secondary program from a list of recognized institutions within a year of the employer application to the government program. Apprentices are not eligible.