Students from Journey Middle School tried their hands at a variety of trades at a special event held at EMCS. (Tim Collins - Sooke News Mirror)

Journey Middle School students try out the trades

Program is designed to expose students to career options

Eighty-four students from Journey Middle School dropped by EMCS on Friday to get a look at career opportunities outside professions that many may be considering.

“There’s a significant gap between the labour supply in the trades and the labourers that are available for those trades,” Matt Harmeson, Edward Milne Community School metalwork teacher, said.

Harmeson was busy showing off his shop and touting his program to groups of eager Grade 8 students and said he hopes the experience may convince some to give further consideration to a career in the trades.

“We’ve seen a lot more students asking about the trades in recent years, and we’ve developed a new program at EMCS to provide trade sampling on a semester long basis at Camosun College,” he said.

The program allows students to sample four separate trades over a semester, giving them a chance to get hands on with those trades and get a sense of whether a career in any of those trades is something they want to pursue.

Dante Di Ponio, the coordinator of trades programs for the Sooke School District, said the idea of exposing students to the trades is to shrink the gap between the skilled labourers available to the trades and the demand for those workers.

“The Industry Training Authority provides grants so that we can provide this sort of program to our students,” Di Ponio said.

“They have a youth arm of their organization and are working very hard to attract young people into the trades. The situation is quite serious for them.”

RELATED: New program stresses environment

Lisa Ayton, Youth Lead for the Industrial Training Authority, is happy that the program is in place, but said that even more needs to be done.

“We’re expecting 70,000 trade jobs to open up in the next ten years. These are good jobs that provide good wages and a really good lifestyle, but most young people have a lot of exposure to academic opportunities but very little in the trades,” Ayton said.

“We’re hoping that these sorts of initiatives can help turn that around.”

Not all the students at the session, however, were sold on abandoning the traditional academic careers and embarking on a future in the trades.

Jemma des Jardins said she wants to go into the arts and her friend, Sabrina Stewart has her heart set on becoming a neurosurgeon. Another friend, Kirsten Kristiansen, is intent on pursuing post secondary education in the sciences.

“It’s fun to do this, but I can’t see myself not going to university,” des Jardins said.

For some students, though, the day’s activities may have opened the door to the trades a crack.

William Scott, another student, found the electronics and robotics demonstration to be intriguing and said he would consider a trade in that field.

“Education has changed a huge amount and the options are wide open. We have students from all different backgrounds going to traditional academic programs in universities and others going into the trades, and they are all wonderful career opportunities,” Laura Fulton, EMCS principal.



mailto:tim.collins@sookenewsmirror.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

sooke school district

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The Glorious Sons ready to wage rock ‘n’ roll war at the Royal Theatre

Kingston band bringing their harder-edged sound to town in March

Athletes gear up for Pan Am XC Cup at Bear Mountain Saturday

This is the first time Canada is hosting the championships

Oak Bay’s first heritage conservation area is in the books

Councillor excited to see how HCA protects character of The Prospect

Petition aims to stop handyDART facility from being built in View Royal

‘Save Craigflower Creek’ has gathered over 1,000 signatures within a week

Saanich launches new tool to help residents learn about the budget

Tool launch will coincide with the Mar. 3 budget meeting

Toddler killed in Squamish grocery store parking lot

Child’s mother taken to hospital but her condition is not known

Two law enforcement trucks ‘deliberately’ set on fire in northern B.C., RCMP say

Police say they have video evidence of a person in the area of the truck fires

B.C. mother, daughter return home after coronavirus quarantine in Asia

Jensine Morabito and her daughter were on Holland America’s Westerdam but did not catch the virus

Leap Year means we get an extra day in February, so how are you spending it?

People online have a number of suggestions and plans on how they will be spending Saturday

Greta sticker that drew outrage in Alberta not child pornography: RCMP

X-Site Energy Services has denied having anything to do with the stickers

Bald eagle hit by train in northern B.C. has a chance of survival

The raptor has been taken to OWL in the Lower Mainland for recovery

Cheslatta Carrier Nation and Rio Tinto sign a historic agreement

Co-operation crucial to stem dropping Nechako Reservoir level

Stories of sexual assault at B.C. tree planting camps ‘shocking but not surprising:’ advocate

Contractors’ association is working with trainers to create respectful culture

Most Read