An employee of Hub Fire Engines speaks to students during a trades job fair held at the University of the Fraser Valley earlier this year. Former apprenticeship students have a zero per cent unemployment rate, according to a recent survey. UFV photo

Zero per cent unemployment for former UFV trades students: survey

Hot job market leaves former UFV apprentices happy with education

With jobs aplenty in their fields, former trades students are almost universally satisfied with the education they received at the University of the Fraser Valley, according to the results of a recent survey.

Every year, current and former university students are surveyed to help post-secondary institutions figure out what they are doing well, and where they need to improve.

And while those who graduated with a bachelor degree, or attended the university to get a diploma, associate degree or certificate were broadly satisfied with the university, former students of UFV’s apprenticeship programs showed the most happiness with their education choice.

According to the survey results, which were included in the university’s most recent Accountability Report to be sent to the province, 97 per cent of apprenticeship students were happy with the relevance of their skills and 100 per cent of those surveyed were satisfied with the quality of instruction and education. Former students of other UFV programs also broadly endorsed their education – albeit at slightly lower rates than their apprentice counterparts.

UFV offers six different apprenticeship programs, with training for aspiring mechanics, carpenters, construction electricians, plumbers, cooks and heavy equipment mechanics.

One major reason for their happiness can be found in a key measure contained in the accountability report: the unemployment rate of former students.

The rate for bachelor degree graduates was 3.2 per cent, while 7.5 per cent of those who finished with a diploma, associate degree or certificate couldn’t find work. Both those figures exceeded the unemployment rate for people with only a high-school diploma or less. But those rates were higher than the figure for former apprenticeship students: 0.0 per cent.

“These results indicate that UFV graduates are well trained to meet the requirements of the job market and are contributing to BC’s economy with their skills,” UFV staff wrote in the university’s most recent Accountability Report to be sent to the province.

Those figures echo a long-standing demand for tradesmen and women, along with a national trend that has seen Canada’s unemployment rate hit a 40-year-low recently, with British Columbia’s unemployment rate of 4.1 per cent the lowest in the country.

The unemployment rate of the Abbotsford-Mission census metropolitan area was 4.6 per cent in November and has been trending down for several years.

RELATED: No end in sight for B.C. labour shortfall: study

RELATED: Surge in job growth drives unemployment rate down to new 40-year low


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tolsen@abbynews.com

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