Durham students taken on Youth Industry Tour
Selected students in Durham Region recently took an information tour of key industries in Durham in an initiative created by the Durham Workforce Authority.
The goal of the Youth Industry Tour is “for students to realize there are local employers and good opportunities right here in Durham, and they can make a good wage and not necessarily leave,” says Heather McMillan, executive director of the DWA.
Pre-qualified students, some of whom are still in high school, toured local businesses and received customized information packages on career opportunities, and had the chance to talk with industry leaders. The tour builds relations, highlights co-op opportunities and allows students to become familiar with local employers and realize they don’t need to leave Durham Region to get a good job, says McMillan.
Thirty students and nine employers participated in the most recent youth industry tour, which the DWA plans to organize three times a year, in February, June and October.
In years past, the DWA has taken secondary school teachers and community partners on industry tours to familiarize them with industry trends and future employment prospects, in an effort to curb outward migration of Durham’s promising youth talent from the labour pool in emerging growth sectors.
The recent tour saw students visit the City of Oshawa municipal facilities and the Oshawa executive airport, among other industries.
In organizing and hosting the tours, the DWA is working to provide school boards, teachers and students with a better understanding of the local labour market, which will help students better plan their career paths. It’s expected the tours will also increase awareness by both employers and educators on current labour market conditions.