Teens interested in green career but need more information: Survey

Many unclear on career opportunities available
|hrreporter.com|Last Updated: 07/21/2011

More than one-half (56 per cent) of Canadian teens are interested in a career in the environment but almost the same amount (51 per cent) aren't clear on the career opportunities available to them, according to a survey of 1,001 teenagers released by Canon Canada.

While 68 per cent of teens believe jobs in the environmental sector are increasing, they don't feel they know enough about the types of jobs available. And 88 per cent agree more access to information about environmental jobs is needed.

"With more than 100,000 environmental sector workers expected to retire within the decade, there are huge opportunities ahead and a shortage of skilled labour to fill the demand," said Janelle Thomlinson, director of research and communications at ECO Canada, which provides environmental career resources for teachers and students. "Today's teens need more resources and guidance to educate them about the types of jobs available if they want to pursue a green career path."

Additional key findings from the Canadian teen survey include:

• 85 per cent of teenagerss had already started to seriously think about their career path, including 67 per cent of grade nine students.
51 per cent consider job availability when choosing a future career path.
• Of those who are interested in an environmental career, 69 per cent cite making the world a better place as the reason.
• One-third (35 per cent) of Canadian teens learn about possible career paths from their extra-curricular activities.
• 77 per cent agree participating in environmental extracurricular activities would help with their decision about whether to pursue a green career.

"Our survey showed us that just 12 per cent of Canadian teens currently participate in extra-curricular activities that are focused on the environment, yet a full 86 per cent want more access to environmental activities in their community," said Colleen Ryan, senior director of corporate communications at Canon Canada.

The survey marks the kick-off to Canon Envirothon, an annual environmental competition at North America's high schools. More than 250 teens from across Canada and the United States test their environmental knowledge through a variety of challenges.

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