As a National Program Manager, I had a blast guiding a talented team of professionals through the project initiation, planning, execution, control/validation and closeout phases of the Digital Skills Youth Internship Program (DSYIP). – Dan Trepanier

Collaborations With Dan Trepanier

Our next big challenge was applying a project management methodology to what would become known as the High Demand Youth Internship Program (HD-YIP) – the successor to FPSYIP, the most successful YMCA National Internship. Program ever! 

As we overcame what seemed like insurmountable obstacles, DSYIP met it’s objectives and achieved program and participant outcomes with great success! Despite valiant efforts, a shift in government priorities led to the unfortunate closing of DSYIP in mid-June 2013. – a bonehead move on their part, but I digress 🙂

Each of the two pilot projects was for $1.2-million and sponsored by Employment and Skills Development Canada(formerly Human Resources and Skills Development) in partnership with the YMCA National Office. 

The aim was to offer professionals the chance to help a young person (up to 30) who is a post-secondary graduate, build skills, develop confidence and benefit from the guidance and support of a mentor. Internship opportunities were full-time, 16 to 20 weeks in length, and offered practical assignments that help motivated youth develop transferable skills.

“I’ve often said that program leaders need to enter a project with a solid exit strategy in mind. Hope for the best and plan for the worst because despite delivering on a performance-based model, the Feds are notorious for killing a good thing, writing off infrastructure and forcing stakeholders to start all over.” — Dan Trepanier

The upside of operating in a ‘start, stop, pause, shut down and rebuild‘ funding climate was that it forced us to innovate and deal with ‘shift’ continually. In April 2013, we successfully responded to a new Federal Government Call for Proposal (CFP).

Despite the $1.5 million caps on each submission, we crafted a rather creative framework to collaborate and successfully secure the bid for three Career Focus submissions totalling $4.5 million across Canada!

Career Focus was a Federal Government initiative designed to provide funding for local, regional, and national employers and organizations to design and deliver a range of activities that enable youth to make more informed career decisions, develop their skills and benefit from work experiences. 

The program aimed to help facilitate youth transition into the labour market.

Let me help you with your next proposal submission! 

The criteria-based assessment process for evaluating our proposals ensured that all submissions were assessed objectively against the Terms and Conditions of the Career Focus program, client and community needs, availability of funds, and themes and priorities of the current year. Our submissions were assessed, recommended and approved based on the following criteria:

  • eligibility of the applicant;
  • experience in delivering this type of activity;
  • results achieved in delivering any previous projects under the Youth Employment Strategy;
  • quality of the proposal;
  • the extent to which the project will assist participants in making a transition into the labour market;
  • the size to which the project will meet identified community and labour market needs;
  • means to measure the progress of the participants and the success of project activities;
  • adherence to local, regional and national priorities;
  • clarity of objectives, outcomes and scheduled time frames;
  • the potential of the project to address employability gaps;
  • involvement and commitment of partners;
  • demonstrated administrative procedures for the management of the project; and
  • demonstrated bookkeeping and financial controls. 


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TOPIC: We Won Proposals Against Tough Assessment Criteria CASE STUDY [CA-NA]



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