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Skilled trades opportunities a focus for 32nd annual Career Fair

November 01, 2013 - 10:56 AM

KELOWNA - If all the focus on a skills gap has you wondering how you can take advantage of the changing labour climate, joining Okanagan College at its 32nd annual Career Fair could be just the right move to find answers about training requirements, educational paths, job opportunities and industry expectations.

From carpentry to health care, engineering technology to writing and publishing, Okanagan College’s Career Fair will offer insights and opportunities about careers and educational paths. It’s free and open to the public on Sunday, Nov. 3 from 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the College’s Kelowna campus.

Among the 50 exhibitors on display with information about careers, education and training, for instance, will be representatives from the Skilled Trades Employment Program (STEP), which operates under the British Columbia Construction Association.

“We’re coming to Career Fair for a couple of reasons,” explained Kathy Wallis, STEP Regional Manager for the Southern Interior. “One of our main goals is to connect work-ready skilled tradespeople to jobs. We work with employers on a provincial scope and help meet the needs of both job-seekers and employers.

“We are also at Career Fair to help answer questions about the current labour market and the opportunities that exist. There is a lot of talk these days about the skills shortage and we can help anyone considering a career in the skilled trades develop a better understanding of where the shortages are and can provide advice on the right training to prepare for the opportunities.”

Just a short walk around the Kelowna campus will allow visitors to Career Fair to explore a wide variety of career options and the training and education they require.

“All of our trades shops will be open and we’ll have demonstrations going on all day,” explained Randy Werger, Associate Dean of Trades and Apprenticeship. “We’re doing something new this year – we’re calling it Ask a Tradesperson – we will be offering up useful trades tips for anyone interested in knowing some trades secrets. For example, ever wondered why you get condensation on your toilet? Our instructors will be explaining why this happens and showing participants how to prevent it.”

Career Fair isn’t just for those interested in the trades, said organizer Michelle Lowry. It’s also about the many other careers that may require a university degree or diploma in arts or science, or credentials in health care, vocational programs or specific skill areas.

“All of our programs will be represented and our professors will be on campus to advise students, parents and anyone interested in post-secondary education on their options,” said Lowry. “It’s a great chance to talk to the very people who teach at the College – prospective students can find out about programs, credentials, transfer opportunities and jobs. Consider it a one-on-one advising opportunity with faculty.”

Parking for the event is free and those who apply to an Okanagan College program at Career Fair will have their application fee waived.

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News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2013
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