Building Environmental Systems (BES) Operator Class II (Accelerated Stream) for Internationally Trained Individuals

Seneca College Certificate



Building design is increasingly focused on intelligent, energy efficient and high performance technologies that improve energy performance and reduce building operating costs. Optimizing building performance requires an understanding of how to successfully integrate independent systems.

Bridging to Alternative Careers in Building Operations and Facilities Management Building Environmental Systems (BES™) Operator Class II (Accelerated Stream) for Internationally Trained Individuals provides specialized training and professional networks to help students launch a professional career in Building Operations & Facilities Management industry in the shortest time possible.

Offered in fast-paced, part-time, employment-focused format, this certificate program will provide students with an understanding of the interrelated complexities of building environmental systems such as heating, ventilation, air handling, water treatment, controls and electrical power supply. Students will also learn about the required codes and by-laws that regulate commercial, mixed use, institutional and critical facilities - all of which require a trained professional to operate.

Developed by Seneca over 40 years ago, the BES™ Certificate has become the industry standard and is the most recognized Certification for Building Operators in Canada today.


  • Top industry instructors
  • Access to Seneca's employer network
  • Opportunities to secure paid employment
  • Professional mentorship opportunities
  • Advanced career management techniques
  • Wrap-around employment support
  • Financial Aid options


Start your application


Those interested in our bridging programs are welcome to attend our free information session. To register for an upcoming information session, please contact us at or call 416-491-5050 ext.77337.


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Funded By:

Ministry of Labour, Training and Skills Development

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Information Session

New students are invited to attend an information session.

Career Opportunities

The Bridging to Alternative Careers in Building Operations and Facilities Management Building Environmental Systems (BES™) Operator Class II (Accelerated Stream) for Internationally Trained Individuals builds on your existing international education and experience. This unique program is offered in a part-time, accelerated, employment focused format during which, students will benefit from guest speakers, facility tours, job developing and coaching as well as networking opportunities with employers and industry experts.

Almost 50% of the students find employment in Building Operations before the program finishes. With courses in Advanced Career Management, Communication Skills for Building Operators in the Canadian Workplace and Building Operators Practicum, students receive personalized ongoing support from program staff and instructors to achieve the ultimate goal of securing employment. In addition to the ongoing support throughout the program, bridging staff also offer support up to two years after completion of the program.

Examples of some employers who hire our graduates include:

  • Black & McDonald
  • Oxford Properties
  • Hullmark
  • Cadillac Fairview
  • Marriot Hotels
  • Angus Consulting Management Limited
  • Brookfield
  • JLL
  • BMO
  • Colliers International
  • Unity Health Toronto
  • CBRE
  • Avis Young
  • Thermo Fisher Scientific
  • GWL Realty

Entry Requirements

In order to apply to the Bridging to Alternative Careers in Building Operations and Facilities Management Building Environmental Systems (BES™) Operator Class II (Accelerated Stream) for Internationally Trained Individuals, you must demonstrate the following:

  • Relevant post-secondary education obtained outside of Canada
  • Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) Assessment Level 7
  • Permanent Resident, Canadian Citizen, Convention Refugee, resident of Ontario
  • Presently unemployed or underemployed

How to determine if you are the right fit for the program:

  • Mechanical and technical aptitude
  • Related background education and experience (mechanical or electrical engineering, HVAC, trades, facilities management, construction are common)
  • Problem solving and troubleshooting ability
  • Strong customer service skills
  • Interest in sustainability and energy efficiency

Note: International students, temporary foreign workers, refugee claimants and individuals lacking post-secondary credentials are not eligible for consideration.

Application Process

Applications are being accepted now for the April start date! Apply today!

To apply for Seneca's Bridging Programs, you will be required to complete and email the following documents to

Application Form:
Please complete the Application Form in full and to the best of your ability.

Letter of Interest:
Your letter of interest should state why you think you are a good candidate for the BES™ Bridging program, how the program is relevant to your career goals and background.

Your resume must be detailed and updated and in a chronological format, beginning with your current or most recent employment. Please be sure to include the following:

  • Your employment history, whether relevant or not, from outside Canada and since coming to Canada
  • All academic qualifications (names of degrees, certificates, diplomas, etc.), including any education obtained in Canada, with dates
  • Professional memberships, licenses, designations, certifications, etc.
  • Any professional training or skills upgrading that you have participated in since arriving in Canada.

CLB Assessment:
You will need to provide proof of completion of a Canadian Language Benchmark Assessment at a minimum Level 7. CLB Assessments should be obtained within the last 12 months from the date of application to be valid.

CLB Assessments are free for Permanent Residents, Convention Refugees and Canadian Citizens. For more information and to book an appointment, please contact the YMCA at 416-928-9622 or visit the Centre for Canadian Language Benchmarks for a list of Assessment Centres in Ontario.

Immigration Status:
You will be required to submit a proof of immigration status and proof that you are a resident of Ontario.

Copies of Academic Qualifications:
A photocopy your academic credentials including any diplomas, degrees and/or certificates.

Note: Please be advised that submission of the required documents does not guarantee your admission to the program. There is a competitive process to gain acceptance and candidates will be invited meet with program staff to assess if they are a right fit for the program.


Start your application

Our fast-tracked curriculum includes the following courses:

Building Systems - A Practical Overview

This course provides an introduction to, and an overview of building systems, enabling students to relate to the operation of a building in a safe, energy efficient and environmentally conscious manner.


The Heating course of the Building Environmental Systems program is designed to prepare students to operate heating systems in buildings in a safe, energy efficient, and environmentally conscious manner.

Air Conditioning

The Air Conditioning and Refrigeration course is designed to prepare students to operate air-conditioning and refrigeration systems in buildings in a safe, energy efficient, economical and environmentally conscious manner.

Air Handling

The Air Handling course (incorporating waste management) is designed to prepare students to operate air handling systems in a safe, energy efficient, and environmentally conscious manner as well as to manage waste in a safe, efficient, cost effective and environmentally friendly manner.


This course covers the design, operation and maintenance of electrical systems in buildings. Topics include the application of Ohm's Law, the components of electrical distribution systems in buildings, their operation and their maintenance. Students also learn how to calculate utility charges and to reduce electrical loads. Safety and energy efficiency are emphasized in this subject.


This course covers the key concepts of commercial building pneumatic HVAC controls.

Water Treatment

This course covers the key concepts of the field of water treatment as applied to the protection and operation of building systems to provide the best use of energy for conservation and safety practices.

Advanced Career Management for Building Operators

This course is designed to introduce self-marketing techniques to international professionals seeking employment. Students will prepare a career development campaign including sample resumes and cover letter and will also engage in practice interviews and follow-up techniques. The focus is industry-specific to their fields with emphasis on integrating Canadian industry knowledge with international experience and skills.

Communication Skills for the Canadian Workplace

This course is designed for internationally trained professionals who wish to improve their oral and written communication skills in the Canadian workplace as Building Operators. Students learn how to manipulate language and functional skills to communicate effectively. Students practice speaking, listening, reading, and writing in a variety of common formal and informal workplace situations. Emphasis is placed on language development, Canadian workplace etiquette, and cultural influences in professional communication.

Occupational Health & Safety for Building Operators

This course introduces the student to health and safety law in Ontario and their rights and responsibilities as a worker in the province. One of the main emphasis in health and safety is prevention, and workers should be aware of the legislation that is designed to protect them and ensure that workplaces are a healthy and safe environment for everyone. In order to protect oneself and those around them, workers should be knowledgeable about the different types of potential hazards that exist in the workplace and have a general understanding of the types of controls that can be put in place to eliminate and/or reduce hazards to a safe level.

Building Environmental Systems Practicum & Lab

This course provides hands-on exposure to equipment and systems used in the field of Building Operations. Students will be prepared to use diagnostic and troubleshooting skills in the work environment. Tours of Seneca College building systems and facilities will be included so that participants better understand the breadth of the field of Building Environmental Systems.


Note: These courses are exclusive only to the Bridging to Alternative Careers in Building Operations and Facilities Management (BES™) Operator Class II (Accelerated Stream) for Internationally Trained Individuals certificate program and are designed with substantial input from industry experts and employers to increase the employability and marketability of our graduates.

Program details are subject to change without prior notice.

Program Outcomes and Certification

  • Over 80% of our graduates find employment in Building Operations, property and facilities management within 3 months of completing the program.
  • Upon successful completion of the program, students receive the BES™ Operator Class II Certificate, recognized by the Toronto Building Managers and Operators Association (TBMOA) and Hotel Engineering/Managers Association of Toronto (HEAT).
  • With only two additional courses, students are able to upgrade to the BES™ Operator Class I, the most widely recognized Building Operator Certification available.
  • Students may also obtain professional designation as a Systems Maintenance Technician (SMT®) with the Building Owners and Managers Institute (BOMI) and apply for registry on the Interprovincial Facility Training Accreditation Council (IFTAC) and Energy Training Ontario Certificates.

Tuition and Financial Aid

The tuition for Bridging to Alternative Careers in Building Operations and Facilities Management Building Environmental Systems (BES™) Operator Class II (Accelerated Stream) for Internationally Trained Individuals is $3200 plus approximately $400 for books.

You may be eligible for the Ontario Bridging Participant Assistance Program (OBPAP) Bursary through the provincial government to cover up to 100% tuition and book costs (as this program is not OSAP eligible). Low interest microloans for immigrants to obtain the credentials needed to work in Canada are also available:


Here is some of what our Bridging student graduates have to say:

"As a Newcomer to Canada, I was checking out different options to take and I found the BES II program. I thought it was promising. The BES II Accelerated Bridging program is a very good program because it has taught me vital information in order to be an effective Building Operator. I learned both the technical skills/information as well as the soft skills on how to better adapt to life and work in Canada. I highly recommend the BES II Program (Accelerated Stream to everyone who wants to pursue a career in the field of building operations/maintenance. The classes are very helpful and beneficial to prepare you on how to be an effective building operator." - Alan R.


"Before coming to Canada, I already researched about this program because in my country of origin I have some maintenance experience. This program gave me so much confidence and developed my mind about the market. This course helped me a lot regarding interviews and resume work. I will recommend this course to those who want to be a part of the maintenance and facility industry. Thank you Seneca." - Ahmed K.


"A coworker told me about this program because I was looking for BES Certification. He mentioned the Bridging program that accepts graduates from international universities. I registered, studied, did projects and exams, and finally graduated. It was different from the regular course, as we had extra courses that I loved. The instructor was so nice, all of them understood our difficulties and our challenges, and it was perfect. Thank you so much for everything." - Marcelo G.


"The BES Class II Bridging program has been the first program that helped me get a competitive profession on the Canadian job market. The diverse courses gave me very useful information about Canadian technical rules, legislation and codes. The program also improved my soft skills and encouraged me to continue studying BES Class I and Facility Management. I would recommend the program to my friends and colleagues because it is practical and up-to-date." - Ilia F.


"I took this program because I was interested to know more about building systems. Since it was 'bridging,' I was more interested in it given the fact that I had a technical background. I would recommend the program to others based on the experience I had in completing the courses. The courses are comprehensive and include major systems associated with the buildings. They also imparted 'soft skills,' which is very important for foreign educated candidates." - Shrinivas G.


"Unlike other BES Class II programs, this accelerated program offers you more insights and knowledge, and specifically groomed by Seneca College, allowing students to have a greater chance to be hired by employers. The extra benefit for taking this program is that the program coordinator will assist in organizing various site tours and events such as mock interviews, which are really helpful to empower ones knowledge and experience." - Tenzin S.

Program Contacts

Contact us via this form or using the phone number(s) below:

416-491-5050 ext.77337

Information Session

New students are invited to attend an information session.