Students will cash in on job boom: experts say

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By Bob Sexton

Ryerson students may find it easier to snag a summer job this year.

With the federal unemployment rate for February 2000 at 6.8 per cent—the lowest on record since 1976 according to a recent Industry Canada report—and with youth unemployment dropping a few percentage points to a 12.5 per cent, Canada is experiencing one of its best job markets in 25 years.

“If you want to get out there, this is the best year I think I’ve seen in six years to do it,” said Kevin Mackra, president of the student employment network and publisher of The Canada Student Employment Guide.

Aino Lokk, an employment counsellor at Ryerson’s career centre, agrees.

“[Canada is] a good, strong marketplace to be looking right now,” she said, adding there are more job postings in the centre than last year and more companies coming onto campus to recruit students.

The job boom is very strong in the high-tech sector and Ryerson information technology management students are poised to cash in Paul Swinwood, president of the software human resource council, told nearly 40 ITM students at Oakham House last Thursday the skills they are learning “are exactly what companies are going to need whether they know it or not.”

Joel Hoch, a second-year administration and information management student, said he is confident he can take advantage of the job boom.

“I believe there will be a job out there for me,” he said.

But even though experts are confident about the recent availability of jobs, not every student has found work.

Neville Cooper, a second-year graphic communications management student, already has a job for the summer, but she knows people who are still looking.

“I’ve been fortunate enough—knock on wood—to have the opportunity to find summer jobs,”  said. “But I know a lot of my friends [haven’t]. It’s tough.”

And even though the job market may be good, the key is still hitting the pavement and looking hard.

“Even though the youth unemployment rate is low,” Mackra said. “You still have ot get out there and work hard to find a job.”

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