Private Vocational Institutions

Attending a Private Vocational Institution

Private Vocational Institutions Brochure: Be smart. Be ready. Be informed.

Private Vocational Institutions – Be smart. Be ready. Be informed. ( Adobe PDF Document 983 KB)

Private vocational institutions offer employment training in a wide range of occupational fields including office and business applications, broadcasting, computers, electronic technology, cosmetology, health care, massage therapy, security, transport driving, and many others.

In most cases, private vocational institutions are privately owned, operate as for-profit businesses and are governed by The Private Vocational Institutions Act and Manitoba Regulation 237/02.

Be an Informed Consumer

As a potential consumer planning to enrol in a private vocational institution, it is your responsibility to make sure the program is right for you. Spend as much time and consideration choosing an institution as you would choosing a career.

  • Check out future job markets in your field of interest and contact potential employers. Ask what training they look for when hiring employees.
  • If you haven’t decided what career path you want to take, you can view Labour Market Information to get more career information.
  • Take the time to seriously investigate and compare all institutions that offer the training that interests you. Make appointments to visit these institutions and ask for a program outline.

Completing a program does not guarantee employment. However, a program should provide graduates with the skills required to meet the minimum employment standards for a particular occupation.

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Registered Private Vocational Institutions

To see if your institution is registered, the Registration and Accountability Office maintains a list of currently registered private vocational institutions.

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Correspondence/Distance Education Programs

Some institutions offer programs that may be taken by correspondence or distance education. Only those institutions that are located in Manitoba are registered by the Department of Education and Training.

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Questions to Ask a Potential Private Vocational Institution

You will want to ask questions about the institution’s admissions requirements, training duration, costs, rules, policies, job placement assistance, and job opportunities.

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Enrolment Contract

Once you have applied for admission and have been accepted by the institution, you will be asked to sign an enrolment contract which should contain, among other details, the following items:

  • name and address of the institution and the name of the program
  • start and end dates of the program, duration, and tuition refund policy
  • date you entered into the contract with the institution
  • name, mailing address, and signature of the student (or guardian)
  • program costs and a payment schedule (if you are paying by installments)

The contract may also contain the institution’s rules and regulations. Carefully review them and make sure that you can abide by them before you sign the contract. Be sure to get a student handbook if one is available.

Once you have signed the contract, the institution must give you a copy. Keep your contract in a safe place for future reference.

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If you have a complaint about a private vocational institution, it is your responsibility to attempt to resolve any conflict by contacting the institution’s administration. If you cannot reach a resolution with your institution, you have a limitation period of one year from the date of the alleged offence to submit a formal written and signed complaint to the Private Vocational Institutions Office describing your concerns.

The Private Vocational Institutions Office does not function in an advocacy role on behalf of either the student or the institution. Instead, it assumes the role of facilitator between the parties to ensure compliance with the Act and the Regulations. All complaints are confidential and information regarding the complaint, investigation and resolution are provided only to the parties involved.

The Private Vocational Institutions Office will:

  • determine whether the complaint is valid
  • confirm that the date of the alleged incident falls within the one-year limitation
  • determine whether the complainant has met with the administrator of the private vocational institution

If there appears to be grounds for a formal complaint, the Private Vocational Institutions Office will:

  • request that the complainant place any concerns in writing to the institution, with a copy to the Private Vocational Institutions Office
  • if necessary, schedule an appointment for an interview with the Project Officer from the Private Vocational Institutions Office
  • request documentation (example, a copy of the enrolment contract and written permission from the complainant to access information pertaining to his/her student record on file with the institution)
  • work with the complainant and the institution to resolve the conflict, where possible

While an investigation may result in some action being taken against an institution, the Private Vocational Institutions Office has limited authority to pursue a full tuition refund on behalf of a complainant.

Please note that anonymous, frivolous and unfounded complaints are not pursued.

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For more information, please contact:

Registration and Accountability Office
Manitoba Education and Training
4th Floor, 1181 Portage Avenue
Winnipeg MB R3G 0T3
Phone 204-945-2725

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