The Canadian Agricultural Human Resources Council (CAHRC), in partnership with the Business + Higher Education Roundtable (BHER) is pleased to announce the launch of the inaugural Growing Our People: National Business Case Competition. This partnership is made possible through the support of the Government of Canada.
Open to post-secondary students from across Canada, this exciting opportunity will introduce participants to the diverse career opportunities available in Canadian agriculture. Of particular interest to students from business, STEM, and agriculture programs, the real-world business problems they address will bring them into direct contact with key agriculture employers.
“We are thrilled to present this experiential learning program to engage post-secondary students in our ever-changing industry,” said Jennifer Wright, Acting Executive Director at CAHRC. “These students, often coming from outside agriculture, are the future of Canada and their new skills and fresh ideas are a tremendous opportunity for agriculture as a whole.”
While the primary agriculture industry is already facing significant labour gaps, CAHRC research indicates that in 2017, 16,500 jobs went unfilled in Canada’s agriculture sector, costing the sector $2.9 billion in lost revenues, or 4.7 per cent of product sales. This same research forecasts the sector’s labour gap will nearly double over the next 10 years, reaching 123,000 people by 2029.
Under-represented groups, such as women, newcomers, Indigenous people, and people with disabilities can play an important role in filling gaps and are encouraged to join the business case competition and bring diversity and innovation to solving agriculture’s unique challenges. Participation in the program will benefit students, educators, and employers alike as they share ideas and expand networks for future career opportunities.
“There really aren’t any skills not presently in demand and this competition will show students how they can contribute in a meaningful way,” added Ms. Wright. “We know that graduates are eager to make their mark on an industry, and what better place than in food – something that binds us all.”
Open for registration until March 4th, students can sign up as teams or as individuals to be placed on a team. The Competition is co-designed with BHER, students, educators, and employer advisory groups with campus-based competitions having already taken place at Fanshawe College (London, ON) and Lakeland College (Vermilion, AB). Winning teams will be announced on March 28th during a virtual event for all students and partners.
For more information and to register visit: https://growing.agriskills.ca/national-competition-home/