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Research Article

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A Focus on the Role of Transfer, Apprenticeship Outcomes, and Future Income Earnings

June 2024

Authors: Robert Brown (York University), David Walters (University of Guelph), Gillian Parekh (York University), Ryan Collis (York University), Christine Mishra (University of Toronto), and Firrisaa Abdulkarim (York University)

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Executive Summary

This report is the second in a three-part series. To view the first report, click here. To view the third report, click here. 

Drawing on data of Toronto District School Board (TDSB) students who started Grade 9 between 2004 and 2009, and who were registered apprentices identified through the Registered Apprenticeship Information System (RAIS), this study examines the earnings outcomes for students who had enrolled in an apprenticeship credential program, with a specific focus on those who transferred among programs. For this analysis, transfer refers to students who have (1) completed a Red Seal certificate and are enrolled but have not yet completed a postsecondary credential; (2) completed a non-Red Seal certificate and are enrolled but have not yet completed a postsecondary credential; (3) enrolled but not completed an apprenticeship certificate and are also enrolled but have not yet completed a postsecondary credential; and (4) left their apprenticeship certificate program and have enrolled but have not yet completed a postsecondary credential. We provide detailed statistics relating to demographics, school based experiences, and future income earnings.


  • Student decisions, experiences, and outcomes

Key Findings

  • Almost a quarter of students pursuing an apprenticeship program could also be characterized as transfer students, and close to a quarter of transfer students were identified as having a disability. 
  • Overall, having other postsecondary credential/experience is generally beneficial for non-Red Seal graduates but not for those with Red Seal certificates. 
  • While there seems to be a strong relationship between gender and the apprenticeship pathway, the relationship between gender and the transfer program is less apparent. As with the entirety of the apprenticeship field, males were disproportionately overrepresented in transfer programs. 
  • Students pursuing apprenticeships also did not reveal any meaningful or statistically significant differences in earnings between those with and without disabilities, regardless of whether they completed or transferred from other postsecondary programs. 
  • Income was also more strongly related to pathway than to transfer, with transfer students who had left their apprenticeship program earning the least and transfer students who had acquired a Red Seal certificate earning the most among all transfer pathways.