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The economy does fluctuate and change like a roller coaster, and each and every individual has his or her own unique skills and abilities to offer to the work place.

Ever since we were young, we all had dreams of becoming something big, something extravagant.   But as we grow up, we begin to realize that our changing interests, abilities and what the economy has to offer often shapes our career aspirations.  I, along with numerous other ambivalent students, have often wondered if attaining a job with good prospects was plausible.  So what better way to find out than researching and learning about the employment trends in Canada?

One of the largest and growing industries in Canada is the health-care and social assistance sector.  Due to the growth of the aging population accompanied with increasing disabilities and health problems, there is an increase of demand for specialist physicians, general practitioners and family physicians, registered nurses, occupational therapists, and physiotherapists to name some of them.  Students who are studying in the Biomedical Physiology & Kinesiology program at SFU have these careers and several others to consider.  For the social assistance industry, individuals who are studying psychology, sociology and social work can look into the demand for counsellors, social workers, welfare and compensation officers, and rehabilitation workers.

With retirement coming around the corner for numerous workers, it is contributing to more professional job openings in the business and management industry.  While SFU is quite renowned for the innovative and top-quality Business Administration program, the future looks bright for the business students as well.  For accounting occupations, it is estimated that there will be roughly 4,500 job openings between 2003 and 2013.  Several companies have a higher demand for financial auditors and accountants to provide a variety of flexible services to serve the diverse communities.  In addition, for human resource specialists, the prospects are not only above average but provides opportunities for upward mobility within the organization or company.  As mentioned before, it is caused by retirement of the Baby Boomer generation.

Engineering is a broad field, however, civil engineers are a few with top prospects.  With the deterioration of roads and bridges as well as various construction projects (such as building Olympic venues this past year), the demand for civil engineers is quite high.  Likewise, technology is prevalent and rapidly changing in our world and companies are looking for qualified software engineers.  There are about 890 projected new job openings from 2006 to 2011, with 340 due to retirements.  For individuals in the computer science or information technology sector, the prospects are above average for analysts, consultants and engineers alike.  However, since there will be a significant number of graduates in this field of study over the next few years, it could lead to many of the job opportunities to be filled.  One thing to keep in mind is to you would be competing with a large number of graduates with similar experience and/or education credentials, so build on other “soft core” skills such as teamwork and people-skills to make yourself stand out from the rest.  Also, you may like to consider broadening yourself by participating in the SFU and Zhejiang Dual Degree Program.  Not only will you be grounded in practical skills but you would also be able to network and learn how to work in different cultures in addition to your degree.

If the job or career you are planning to pursue is not listed above, do not fret!  The economy does fluctuate and change like a roller coaster, and each and every individual has his or her own unique skills and abilities to offer to the work place.  Although there are a handful of jobs with considerably higher prospects than others, do not be discouraged as it is more important to do what you love and love what you do.

SFU Student

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