Potential Employers

Visit Public Service Commission of Canada's website for a list of the different types of occupations in the government sector.


Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada: Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada (AANDC) supports Aboriginal people (First Nations, Inuit and Métis) and Northerners in their efforts to improve social well-being and economic prosperity; develop healthier, more sustainable communities; and participate more fully in Canada's political, social and economic development.

Agriculture and Agri-Food: Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) provides information, research and technology, and policies and programs with the goal of achieving an agriculture, agri-food and agri-based products sector that is environmentally sustainable, competitive, innovative and able to proactively handle risks. Read more on the Agriculture and Agri-Food website.

Canadian Heritage: Canadian Heritage is responsible for national policies and programs that promote Canadian content, foster cultural participation, active citizenship and participation in Canada's civic life, and strengthen connections among Canadians. Their priorities are centered around culture, identity and sport. They deliver policies and programs related to broadcasting and interactive media, arts and cultural industries, heritage objects and spaces, official languages, citizenship participation and identity, human rights, Aboriginal Peoples, youth and sport initiatives, as well as national ceremonies and symbols.

Citizenship and Immigration: The Ministry of Citizenship and Immigration has three major areas of responsibility: screening and welcoming immigrants to Canada; supporting people through the process of becoming a Canadian citizen; and encouraging the full participation of all cultures by enhancing their level of economic, social, and cultural integration.

Environment: Environment Canada's business is protecting the environment, conserving the country's natural heritage and providing weather and environmental predictions to keep Canadians informed and safe. Their main mandate is to: preserve and enhance the quality of the natural environment, including water, air, soil, flora and fauna; conserve Canada's renewable resources; conserve and protect Canada's water resources; forecast weather and environmental change; enforce rules relating to boundary waters; and coordinate environmental policies and programs for the federal government.

Finance: Finance Canada develops policies and provides advice to the Government with the goal of creating a healthy economy for all Canadians. For example, it plans and prepares the federal government's budget; Analyzes and designs tax policies; develops regulations for Canada's banks and other financial institutions; administers the transfer of federal funds to the provinces and territories; develops policies on international finance and helps design our country's tariff policies; monitors economic and financial developments in Canada and provides policy advice on a wide range of economic issues.

Fisheries and Oceans: Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) and its Special Operating Agency, the Canadian Coast Guard, deliver programs and services that support sustainable use and development of Canada's waterways and aquatic resources. Their mission is to deliver to Canadians safe and accessible waterways, healthy and productive aquatic ecosystems; and sustainable fisheries and aquaculture.

Foreign Affairs and International Trade: The objective of the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade is to defend and promote Canada's interests throughout the world. Their mandate is to is: ensure that Canada's foreign policy reflects true Canadian values and advances Canada's national interests; strengthen rules-based trading arrangements and to expand free and fair market access at bilateral, regional and global levels; and work with a range of partners inside and outside government to achieve increased economic opportunity and enhanced security for Canada and for Canadians at home and abroad.

Health: Health Canada is the Federal department responsible for helping Canadians maintain and improve their health, while respecting individual choices and circumstances. They rely on high quality scientific research and ongoing consultation with Canadians to determine health needs, communicate information about disease prevention to protect Canadians from avoidable risks and encourage Canadians to take an active role in their health, such as increasing their level of physical activity and eating well.

Human Resources and Skills Development: Human Resources and Skills Development Canada's (HRSDC) mission is to build a stronger and more competitive Canada, to support Canadians in making choices that help them live productive and rewarding lives, and to improve Canadians' quality of life. To do this, they: develop policies that help Canadians to use their talents, skills and resources to participate in learning, work and their community; create programs and support initiatives that help Canadians move through life's transitions—from families with children to seniors, from school to work, from one job to another, from unemployment to employment, from the workforce to retirement; and create better outcomes for Canadians through Service Canada and other partners.

Industry: The Department of Industry's mission is to foster a growing, competitive, knowledge-based Canadian economy. The Department works with Canadians throughout the economy and in all parts of the country to improve conditions for investment, improve Canada's innovation performance, increase Canada's share of global trade and build a fair, efficient and competitive marketplace. Program areas include developing industry and technology capability, fostering scientific research, setting telecommunications policy, promoting investment and trade, promoting tourism and small business development, and setting rules and services that support the effective operation of the marketplace.

Public Works and Government Services: Public Works and Government Services Canada plays a supporting role in over 100 government departments and agencies, providing services that allow them to focus on serving Canadians. Some of the areas supported are: purchasing, office space, information technology, heritage properties, "greening" (e.g. energy efficiency and recycling), telecommunications, translation, accounting and banking, auditing, consulting, and human resources.

Transport: Transport Canada is responsible for Canada's transportation policies and programs. It strives to ensure that air, marine, road and rail transportation are safe, secure, efficient and environmentally responsible. Transport Canada reports to Parliament and Canadians through the Minister of Transportation, Infrastructure and Communities. It works with its portfolio partners, other government departments and jurisdictions, and industry to ensure that all parts of Canada's transportation system work well.

Veteran Affairs: The main mandate of the Department of Veteran Affairs (VAC) is the care, treatment, or re-establishment in civil life of any person who served in the Canadian Forces or merchant navy or in the naval, army or air forces or merchant navies of Her Majesty, of any person who has otherwise engaged in pursuits relating to war, and of any other person designated and survivors or dependants of any of the above groups. Some of the programs run by the Department of Veteran Affairs include: disability pensions, veterans allowances, pension advocacy, health care and commemoration.

Western Economic Diversification: Western Economic Diversification Canada's (WD) mandate is to promote the development and diversification of the economy of Western Canada and advance the interests of the West in national economic policy. To achieve this mandate, they support initiatives that contribute to the following project activities: a strengthened western Canadian innovation system and a competitive and expanded business sector in Western Canada; and economically viable communities in Western Canada with a high quality of life.


The official websites of each Canadian province offer insights into the unique nature of that province along with details on its government, ministries, programs and services, along with news releases and updates on new legislation and issues facing citizens.

Province of Ontario

Aboriginal Affairs: The Ministry of Aboriginal Affairs has four main goals in relation to our aboriginal peoples: to build stronger relationships, improve social conditions, enhance economic opportunities and sustainability and to advance land claim settlements and reconciliations.

Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs: The Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs is committed to supporting and strengthening Ontario's agri-food sector, improving food safety, protecting our environment, and strengthening Ontario's rural communities.

Attorney General: The Ministry of the Attorney General delivers justice services to Ontarians by: prosecuting crime and preserving public order and personal safety; supporting victims of crime throughout the criminal justice system; providing decision-making and justice support services to vulnerable people; providing criminal, civil and family courts and related justice services that are fair, timely and accessible; providing legal advice and services to government.

Children and Youth Services: The main mandates of the Ministry of Children and Youth Services are to give children the best possible start in life, to prepare youth to become productive adults and to make it easier for families to get the services they need at all stages of a child's development. The Ministry works closely with community partners and the Ministries of Education, Health and Long-Term Care, Community and Social Services, Citizenship and Immigration, Culture, and Tourism and Recreation to provide a wide range of services related to the healthy development, protection and care of children and youth along with justice services for youth ages 12 to 17.

Citizenship and Immigration: The Ministry of Citizenship and Immigration is committed to ensuring the full participation of all people living in Ontario. They do this by celebrating the accomplishments of exceptional Ontarians, promoting volunteerism, helping newcomers settle into their new homes and become productive members of society and promoting accessibility for all Ontarians.

Community and Social Services: The Ministry of Community and Social Services provides a wide range of community-based services for individuals and families. In particular the Ministry: provides income support for Ontarians in need so they can move toward self-sufficiency; supports families and communities to help Ontario's most vulnerable citizens live with dignity; and provides important community services to those who need them.

Community Safety and Correctional Services: The Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services mandate is to ensure that Ontario's communities are supported and protected by law enforcement and public safety systems that are safe, secure, effective, efficient and accountable. Th three main areas of responsibility are: Correctional Services, Public Safety and Security and Policing Services.

Consumer Services: The Ministry of Consumer Services educates, protects and serves Ontario consumers and aims to ensure a fair, safe and informed marketplace. The Ministry does this by providing information services and regulatory practices such as the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario and the Ontario Film Board.

Economic Development and Innovation: The Ministry of Economic Development and Trade works towards building a strong economy for all Ontarians by helping Ontario businesses innovate and compete, attracting new growth and investment to our province and supporting the expansion of exporting by Ontario businesses.

Education: The main goal of the Ministry of Education is to provide all students with the opportunity to achieve success. The Ministries' major responsibilities include: providing funding to school boards and school authorities; developing curriculum; establishing provincial standards for assessing student achievement; ensuring teaching excellence; setting guidelines for school board officials; setting requirements for student diplomas and certificates; making regulations that govern all aspects of education; evaluating and approving learning materials; and, operating provincial schools for students with special needs.

Energy: The Ministry of Energy is responsible for promoting the development of a safe, reliable, secure and environmentally sustainable energy supply as the foundation for a strong economy and a healthy and clean province. The Ministry develops the energy policy framework for Ontario, within which energy market participants and regulators - the Independent Electricity Systems Operator and the Ontario Energy Board - operate. Developing newer, cleaner sources of energy, and promoting energy conservation, are key priorities for the Ministry. The Ministry also represents the government as shareholder of Hydro One and Ontario Power Generation, both of which are fully owned by the province.

Environment: The Ministry of the Environment (MOE) is the lead ministry responsible for protecting, restoring and enhancing the environment to ensure public health and environmental quality. The ministry safeguards our environment by working toward cleaner air, water and land, and healthier ecosystems for the people of Ontario.

Finance: The mission of the Ministry of Finance is to establish an environment that will ensure a dynamic, innovative and growing economy, and to manage the fiscal, financial and related regulatory affairs of the Province of Ontario. The Ministry's major responsibilities include: Tax Policy, Budget and Revenue Operations; Economic, Fiscal and Financial Policy; Financial Services Industry Regulation; Strategic Infrastructure Investments and Partnerships; and Government Financing and Debt Management.

Francophone Affairs: The Office of Francophone Affairs' goal is to ensure that Francophones have access to provincial government services in French and that they are able to contribute to the social, economic, and political life of the province, while preserving their linguistic and cultural heritage.

Government Services: The Ministry of Government Services (MGS) is focused on modernizing and improving front-line public services that people depend on, and creating a modern regulatory framework to protect consumers and facilitate economic growth. Some of their key activities includes the provision of government information to individuals and businesses, issuing birth, death and marriage certificates, managing the Land Registry Offices across Ontario and distributing Government of Ontario information through Publications Ontario.

Health and Long-Term Care: The ministry is responsible for administering Ontario's health care system and providing services to the public through such programs as health insurance, drug benefits, assistive devices, care for the mentally ill, long-term care, home care, community and public health, and health promotion and disease prevention. It also regulates hospitals and nursing homes, operates psychiatric hospitals and medical laboratories, and co-ordinates emergency health services.

Infrastructure: The Ministry of Infrastructure is the ministry responsible for managing infrastructure planning and priority setting for the Government of Ontario. It works closely with other Ontario ministries to make strategic investments that will meet the needs of a growing population and economy by: identifying what infrastructure developments will most benefit key public sectors and the standard of living in Ontario over the long run; finding the best models for financing infrastructure project, and ensuring the stock of public infrastructure assets in Ontario is maintained in a state of good repair.

Labour: Established in 1919 to develop and enforce labour legislation, the Ministry of Labour's mission is to advance safe, fair and harmonious workplace practices that are essential to the social and economic well-being of the people of Ontario. The ministry's mandate is to set, communicate and enforce workplace standards while encouraging greater workplace self-reliance. The major resposnisbleiites of the ministry include Occupational Health and Safety, Employment Rights & Responsibilities and Labour Relations.

Municipal Affairs and Housing: The goal of the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing goal is an Ontario made up of safe and strong urban and rural communities with dynamic local economies, abundant greenspace and a high quality of life. The ministry promotes accountable local governments that are able to plan, manage and invest for the future and works to strengthen Ontario communities by promoting a housing market that serves the full range of housing needs, protects tenants, and encourages private sector building. The ministry also provides opportunities for supportive programs for low-income tenants and housing for special-needs tenants, and supports the creation of affordable housing.

Natural Resources: The Ministry of Natural Resources is the steward of Ontario's provincial parks, forests, fisheries, wildlife, mineral aggregates, and the Crown lands and waters that make up 87 per cent of the province. Their mission is to sustainably manage the province's natural resources to contribute to the environmental, social and economic well-being of the people of Ontario, and to ensure Ontario's resources remain abundant and available for future generations. The major responsibilities of this ministry are: Forest Management, Fish & Wildlife Management, Land & Waters Management, Ontario Parks, Aviation & Forest Fire Management and Geographic Information.

Northern Development, Mines and Forestry: The Ministry of Northern Development, Mines and Forestry (MNDMF) promotes northern economic and community development by coordinating the delivery of programs and services in Northern Ontario. As the ministry responsible for the provincial minerals sector, MNDMF enhances mineral sector competitiveness and ensures the sustainable development of Ontario's mineral resources. The major responsibilities of the ministry include: advocating for northerners in government; fostering community and economic development and promoting trade and investment in Northern Ontario; overseeing the annual Northern Highways Program; administering the Mining Act; delivering a wide range of geoscientific activities and services; and marketing Ontario to international mining investors.

Seniors' Secretariat: The Ontario Seniors' Secretariat (OSS) undertakes or influences policy initiatives that aim to improve the quality of life of Ontario seniors and supports public education efforts for and about older Ontarians. The OSS also works with Ontario's major seniors' organizations and other provincial ministries, as well as federal and municipal governments, to ensure the needs of older Ontarians are considered in all government policies and programs that could affect their quality of life.

Tourism and Culture: The Ministry of Tourism and Culture supports delivery of high quality tourism and recreation experiences to Ontarians and visitors to Ontario along with developing and encouraging creation, innovation and participation in the arts, and sustaining access to our cultural institutions. The ministry provides leadership and fosters community capacity in the conservation of Ontario's cultural heritage and stimulates an environment in which our cultural industries can thrive and prosper. The ministry also promotes free and equitable access to information through Ontario's public libraries.

Training, Colleges and Universities: The Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities strives to provide people living in Canada with a high-quality education and a solid foundation of relevant skills and training. The education and training system prepares people so they can get good jobs and improve the competitiveness of Ontario's economy. The Ministry is responsible for university, college and apprenticeships programs along with Employment Ontario, an employment and training network which connects people looking for work with the resources that can help them find meaningful work.

Transportation: The Ministry of Transportation works towards creating a balanced and effective transportation system to support communities and offer a high quality of life. The key mandates of the Ministry include improving public transit, investing in critical transportation infrastructure such as provincial highways and border crossings and improving road safety and enhancing customer service.

Women's Directorate: The Ontario Women's Directorate (OWD) provides a vehicle for government action on issues of concern to women – in particular social, economic and justice-related issues. The Directorate works to advance women's economic independence and to prevent violence against women and their children so that young girls and women can enjoy life and career success. The ultimate goal of the OWD is a province where all women are able to pursue and achieve economic independence and where they can live free from the fear of violence against themselves and their children.

Please Note: Descriptions of many of these online resources are taken from language used on external websites. Claims and opinions expressed are not necessarily those of the Career Centre or York University.