Sunday, September 1, 2013 | Categories: Episodes
Of course it's harder to get a job. You need a degree to get your foot in the door, and if you don't have experience in said field you're out of luck. Even if you're a new graduate employers still expect experience. And let's not forget about the 60+ crowd that should retire but don't.
Moncton, New Brunswick
Yes, the job market is lousy, but most kids expect an unrealistic standard of living, and they seem to have few life skills including budgeting and manners. Neither has the school system provided them with adequate literacy and numeracy. If parents coddle their kids and treat them like their best friends, the kids have little reason to strike out on their own.
Victoria, British Columbia
I would like to add one more adjective to the list that opened the program: Generation Now. We download, obtain and do things at such a fast rate that we expect the job right now. We also live in a generation in which money has never been more powerful, more restricted and more sought after. Couple these things with a post-secondary educational community that does not match the current job market in the least (like arts degrees and teacher's colleges), then the combination of problems becomes problematic.
Perhaps one of the problems with tying education to jobs is the entire concept of jobs. In order to get a job, a job has to be available, which means that someone has to be in a position to offer one. Not only that, but someone has to offer jobs that have some longevity for there to be any meaning to the work. Perhaps students should be imbued with a sense of controlling their own employment rather than depending on others to create a ready-made niche.
Victoria, British Columbia
I am astounded at how little Canadians appreciate the history of the current unemployment crisis for our youth and our continent. It all began in the late 1950s, when Walt Whitman Rostow, Prof. of Economic History at M.I.T., recommended to the U.S. government that America should become strictly a service economy (TV and auto repair, dry cleaning, lawyers and doctors) and ship all of its industry offshore. And they did it! The immediate and long-term advantages were much, much lower wages and safety standards offshore, immense downward pressure on wages in the U.S. and the breaking of union power in the U.S. Now employers hold almost all of the cards. There is very little on-the-job training and prospective employees must take the time, expense and the great risk to train themselves for an unknowable expertise in an unknowable future job. That's why our youth and our economy are in trouble.
I'm disgusted with the greed and indifference of some members of the older generation who refuse to help younger people get established in the labour force. Of 15 full-time professors in one department at the University of Calgary, nine of them are in their 70s and at least one of them is 80 years old, but because there is no mandatory retirement, these seniors will continue to earn more than $150,000 per year, all the while double-dipping into their generous pensions. It's worth noting that this is making it harder for the university to trim their budget so as to meet the cuts in funding that have been imposed by the Redford government. Meanwhile, eager and talented younger people are forced to find work elsewhere and may never have the opportunity to practice within their fields of expertise.
I don't understand why the structural issues for unemployment have not been mentioned to this point. Jobs are of poorer quality, are typically part-time with reduced (if any) benefits and all generations are staying in the workforce as a result. In addition, workforce planning has been utterly abysmal and short-sighted. Check out how many universities in Ontario are grinding out school teachers though the demographic evidence demonstrate the folly of this strategy.
No mystery here. In my experience, the majority of job applications crossing my desk are submitted by people under 40 who can hardly read and write. And yes, they do have post-secondary educations.
There are job opportunities for young people in healthcare. British Columbia has a pressing need for physiotherapists. An article in the Globe & Mail dated on Sat. June 1, 2013 said there are openings for more than 260 physiotherapy jobs across the province. In fact, it is suspected that the number of job opportunities for physiotherapists is actually greater than 260 available jobs as some employers have given up. As a physiotherapy manager, I continuously have vacancies and have great difficulty filling vacant positions.
Kamloops, British Columbia
I have a Master's degree in physics and for three years I have been looking for work suited to my education. I spent two years in Calgary looking for work and living independently. My work was as a science enrichment provider and I made only $8,500 to $12,000 annually. I moved back home after two years of lack of success. I looked for a further year from North Battleford, Saskatchewan. I just moved out of my parents' home to move to Alsask, Saskatchewan to work as an oilfield swamper. Land is cheap and the work pays well.
Physics won't make you money like engineering or Medical Physics. I find no one in human resources understands my qualifications. I have decided to take on learning robotics while working with an eye to Oilfield applications.
The dept load placed on the young generation and their parents due to post-secondary education Only exists because the baby boomer generation has reduced the public investment in the education system. Universities cost way more for me than they did for my parents and despite the help that I received I graduated with a far greater amount of dept than what my parents' generation did. The political will of the major voting generation, the baby boomers, is not oriented to paying the taxes required to properly fund education the way it was funded for them.
Victoria, British Columbia
I operate a company in Peterborough which now employs me, two full-time employees and a younger, temporary fill-in person who has been getting about three days a week since commencing employment with me two months ago. Ours is a store-front copy shop type of company, fully independent which I started myself, with very limited capital, some 15 years ago whilst simultaneously raising four kids of my own.
My two employees are mature (in their early 50s) who know what it is to work for a living. But in each case, I have had to invest a year or two in them to train them to a level where they can pull their own weight. The third individual is younger (early 30s), lives with parents and cannot find full-time employment. As our business grows, which it is doing gradually, I continue to invest in equipment and personnel. There is very little in the way of government support to help bring these people up to speed. As you can imagine, taking on another full time person is an expensive proposition. Might I suggest a grant or subsidy of sorts that is attached to the new worker and gives some immediate relief to the potential employer whilst training this person, perhaps in the form of a training allowance that can be deducted from monthly employee deduction remissions?
A caller said that there are only so many jobs and the boomers won't retire and free them up. This is a red herring. What about economic growth? That is where the new jobs come from. I can think of a recent huge shipping project in Nova Scotia, a new pipeline from Alberta to New Brunswick, and many others, and the related manufacturing and support jobs. There are tons of jobs out there.
Perhaps the reason baby boomers aren't retiring is that they need to keep working in order to afford the multiple degrees their children feel they need in order to get their dream job. Catch 22?
Here's a twist on your topic: My 25-year-old daughter and her husband pay our mortgage.
Pretty sweet, eh? What goes around can come around.
I am in my 30s and became sick and had to be out of the paid workforce for an extended period. Now, trying to get back in is ridiculously hard. They are hiring young folks just out of university with no experience. It is very upsetting to not be able to even get interviews when I have a human service degree and experience. Are other people finding that a period out of the work force makes it very difficult to get back in? Or do any employers have insight as to why this looks bad on a resume? It's not like I could control getting seriously sick.
Even though you are paid in your first year of work, you are actually a drain. It takes that long before you know enough to be useful. So if you leave at the end of a year, the employer is seriously out of pocket after investing in you. This means the most important thing to do in the job interview is explain why you chose the company to work at, why you like it more than other companies and while it is unlikely you will leave.
Victoria, British Columbia