West Kelowna  

Students inspired during career fair

Jennifer Zielinski

Over 250 aboriginal students from schools around the District shuffled through a gymnasium Thursday afternoon, to get a glimpse at what their future could hold.

From life insurance to policing ,over 60 employers from around the valley spoke to the youth about job opportunities, education and aspirations, during the second annual WFN Career Fair.

John Nevokshnoff says he can tell this generation of students has a strong work ethic, they just need more opportunity.

"They see this (the career fair) as an opportunity, several of the guys and gals have taken cards and information, they say 'I'm waiting until I'm 19 then I am going to get a hold of you because I want to find out more about this'."

While other employers such as the West Kelowna Warriors, were looking for more volunteers than employees.

"It's a good chance to have fun with the Warriors learn about promotions and things behind the scenes," explains Andrew Deans with the Warriors. "A lot of kids actually came by and it is fun to talk to them and get them involved with us."

While some students were still in middle school and maybe too young to be thinking of a career, many others were excited to see all of the options.

"The idea behind this is just to get Aboriginal students and any community members to try and find out what education path they want to take or what's out there for them," says WFN membership employment coordinator Joelle Esau.

Trades and Aesthetics were popular choices among the teens, but a career that stood out to many was that of joining the RCMP or WFN law enforcement team.

Cst. S.R. Walstrom says while students at this demographic are too young for career recruitment, the RCMP do offer some pre-career options.

"There is an army camp in Vernon that the kids can go to and build some skills for future development for careers in the RCMP or other policing agencies. "

One young girl who spoke to Castanet says she was excited at the thought of joining the RCMP.

"They were trying to recruit me, they were like (sic) we need more Aboriginal females working on the force."

The fair ran from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and even Castanet held a booth at the event in the hopes of drawing students into a promising career in journalism, graphic design, IT or sales.


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