Key Aspects

The Autism CanTech! program removes barriers for employers by offering a holistic employment model where employers receive education and training at the same time as the program teamwork with youth living with Autism/ Autistic youth to develop their employability skills. 

Support for Employers

The training that employers receive includes how Autistic youth engage with others, how to implement easy-to-manage hiring and management processes, and how to deploy innovative new assistive technology such as AI-based chatbot, smart calendar, task reminders, and technology-enhanced monitoring and coaching. Training is available in an interactive, pre-recorded format that can be taken at employers convenience.

Employers and Autistic youth are also supported through the initial employment period with personalized Autism CanTech! Career Coaches that will help with the introduction of the workplace assistive software.

This is a program that will help employers align their business development with inclusion and accessibility principles. In the long-term, employers will be well-integrated into a technical training ecosystem for the advancement of Autistic youth professionals. utistic youth are one of the most underrepresented groups in the workforce, yet they have a wealth of technical skills, a unique perspective, and untapped potential.

Autism CanTech! Supports

The Autism CanTech Program is a unique program that offers new and innovative supports to help Participants succeed.

Career Coaches

Assigned to participants when they enroll, a Career Coach will offer ongoing aid and support to students throughout their time with the program, starting with the Employability Skills Assessment Tool (ESAT).
Some of the ways in which a Career Coach will offer support include:

  • Resume review and interview preparation.
  • Employability skills and understanding your strengths at work
  • Preparing you for your work experience.
  • Monthly one-on-ones with your Career Coach.
  • Daily monitoring and check-ins using RoboCoach, email, or phone calls as required, during the work experience component.
  • Site visit to work experience placement employer-partner.
  • Discussions and follow-up on the employer-partner’s midterm evaluation.
  • Follow-up support if work experience is extended for up to six months.

RoboCoach

RoboCoach is assistive technology platform designed by Technology North to overcome employment barriers faced by autistic youth. It provides consistent communication between the participants work experience supervisor, the participant, their Career Coach, and their Parent or Guardian, and acts as a platform where employers can assign tasks or send messages and assist participants with attention or regulation challenges.

RoboCoach is also a great tool to help team members with Autism know what to do and when to it, reducing ambiguity around tasks and improving outcomes.

ACT! Centre

The ACT! Centre is the main home for the Autism CanTech! (ACT!) Program and the base from which the program is run.

The space offers:

  • Study and work space: with nine desktop computers stations where participants can study, do their homework, work on projects, search for jobs online, or access other learning resources.
  • Meeting space: Equipped for nice participants and their devices, this space can be used to meet with staff, Career Coaches, Employer-partners, or be the site of informal workshops and discussion groups.
  • Chill space: a space designed to be a quiet oasis for any participant or visitor who may be feeling overstimulated or overwhelmed and need to spend some time to gather themselves.

The Centre is also a home for workshops, lunch-and-learn sessions, speaker series, and other exciting events and learning opportunities.

The Career Coaches, Centre Manager, and Administrative Assistants of the ACT! Program are also available in the Centre to provide any assistance or resources they can.

Combined the Autism CanTech! supports work together to ensure that participants will have their specific needs met in an environment which feels inclusive and supportive.

NorQuest College
Edmonton Campus

10230 108 St NW
Edmonton, AB T5J 4Z7
contact@autismcantech.ca
1.833.405.9919

Douglas College
New Westminster campus

700 Royal Avenue 
New Westminster, BC V3M 5Z5 
778.628.5823 

Humber College
North Campus

205 Humber College Blvd,
Toronto, ON  M9W 5L7
416.795.5561

Program information


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Treaty Acknowledgement

Amiskwacîwâskahikan

The ACT! Program is honoured to teach and learn across many traditional and treaty lands including the unceded territories of the Coast Salish Peoples of the QayQayt (KuhKite) and Kwikwetlem First Nations to the West; through the treatied lands and traditional territories of the Nehiyawak, Dene, Stoney Nakoda, Nakota Sioux, Tsuutina, Annishnabe, Metis, and Inuit; all the way to the traditional lands of the Mississaugas of the Credit in the Place of the Alders along the Humber River Watershed in the East. The Autism CanTech! Team is dedicated to ensuring that Indigenous voice is centered, honoured and respected. In this spirit, we invite you to reflect on your relationship to the lands on which you are currently located, and take action for positive change in your community in this time of reconciliation.