Builders on P.E.I. are trying get more young people training for careers in the trades, and they've partnered with the province to reach out to high school students.
The province and the Residential Construction Sector Council have created a video, a fake news cast, outlining careers in the trades. The presentation is fun, but the message is serious.
"They can have a year-round career and make a good living and they don't have to go off-island. We'd like to keep them here," said Tracy Gormley of the Residential Construction Sector Council.
The message is important both for young people - who face an unemployment rate of more than 17 per cent in the province - and for the economy, which is dealing with a shortage of people who work in the trades.
The shortage already exists, and the current workforce is aging and heading for retirement. Student electrician Brett MacDonald is looking forward to filling the need.
"I just think it's great. Gets you going. It gets you excited to wake up in the morning, go work with your hands and work with a bunch of great guys," said MacDonald.
"The way things are looking right now it's looking pretty good for jobs in the future."
The sector council is looking to get more women interested in the trades as well. Nancy Gaudet, the Island's only female certified plumber, hopes the video makes it easier for the next generation of women to break into what she still sees as a male-dominated industry.
"I just always wanted to work with my hands," said Gaudet of her decision to take up plumbing.
"If they would've had a video like this I might've not been so afraid to try it."
The sector council is working with the province to get that video into high schools across P.E.I. within the next month.
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