PERCÉ interns gain valuable business skills during summer mentoring program

CHARLOTTETOWN – SEPTEMBER 18, 2013 – Nineteen post-secondary students from across Prince Edward Island had the opportunity this summer to enhance their business skills, make important network connections, and increase their awareness of potential career paths that could allow them to live and work in their home province after graduation.

“Our Government understands that entrepreneurs are not only major contributors to the Canadian economy but, that they also serve as excellent resources for coaching our youth,” said Minister Gail Shea, on behalf of the Honourable Rob Moore, Minister of State (Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency). “The PERCÉ model of mentorship offers an effective method of hands-on learning. The new business skills these students gain in their internships become an invaluable part of their future career path.”

PERCÉ, a youth entrepreneur-based program, was developed to provide PEI youth who are entering their 3rd or 4th year of university or college with an opportunity to experience the power of entrepreneurship through a meaningful internship with an Island business.

“Encouraging entrepreneurship and leadership in young Islanders is an important part of building a strong and sustainable economy,” said Minister Allen Roach. “Our Government has been pleased to support this initiative, which encourages youth to choose to live and work in Prince Edward Island and consider entrepreneurship as a career option.”

Celebrating its 10th anniversary this summer, the program’s mission remains strong: retain and/or repatriate youth and show them, through relevant work experiences in their field of interest, that the future can be bright and prosperous in Atlantic Canada.

“PERCÉ has proven to be an excellent method of encouraging our young professionals to return to PEI after their postsecondary studies to start a career and to make a life for themselves in their home province,” says Bonnie Gallant, executive director of RDÉE Prince Edward Island, which hosts the program. “We’re truly proud of what PERCÉ has accomplished in only a decade.”

The Government of Canada, through ACOA’s Business Development Program, invested $55,000 to support the implementation of the 2013 program. The Government of Prince Edward Island invested $35,000 through the Department of Innovation and Advanced Learning. RDÉE Prince Edward Island, the provincial francophone economic development council, administers the program and provides a contribution to the project, as do the employers who work with the interns.


Pictured from left are the Honourable Allen Roach, Minister of Innovation and Advanced Learning; Ms. Bonnie Gallant, Executive Director, RDÉE Î-P-É; Ms. Joceline Arsenault, PERCÉ Intern; and the Honourable Gail Shea, Minister of Fisheries and Oceans. (Photo by Brian Simpson)

For more information, contact:
Jana Parker
ACOA PEI & Tourism

Autumn Tremere
Innovation PEI

Stéphane Blanchard
RDÉE Prince Edward Island
902-370-7333, Ext. 402