Program will introduce students to the agriculture career track as they tackle complex business challenges in the industry

November 25, 2021 (OTTAWA) - The Canadian Agricultural Human Resource Council (CAHRC) is pleased to announce the launch of a new partnership with the Business + Higher Education Roundtable (BHER) to create an agriculture-focused business case competition for Canadian post-secondary students from any discipline. This partnership is made possible through generous support from the Government of Canada.

The goal of this partnership is to increase the number of post-secondary students considering agriculture as a career choice. Research conducted by CAHRC has shown that there will be a need for 123,000 more workers in agriculture by 2029. Innovative programs such as this one are essential to draw the next generation of Canadians into the agri-workforce.

 “There is a real need to explore untapped labour sources as we look to the future of the agri-workforce”, said Jennifer Wright, Acting Executive Director at CAHRC. “Agriculture offers outstanding opportunities and we need to expand awareness of these opportunities to students in more general disciplines such as science, information technology, business, or marketing. We are excited to introduce post-secondary students to the rewarding careers available across the value-chain.”

 Launched in fall 2021, the business case competition is co-designed with BHER, students, educators, and employer advisory groups. Working to solve real-life business problems, students from agriculture and non-agriculture backgrounds, such as STEM and business faculties, will collaborate, network, and connect with employers involved in the project.

 Under-represented groups, such as women, newcomers, Indigenous students, and students with disabilities 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.

 “The Canadian agriculture industry is a primary economic driver for Canada but faces exceptionally high job vacancies and COVID-19 has amplified the impact of this”, said added Wright. “The opportunity to partner with BHER to engage agriculture and non-agriculture students alike in building awareness of the industry and job-ready skills is exciting and will have a positive impact on the industry.”

 Three post-secondary campuses have signed on to take part in the business case competition this fall including: Fanshawe College in London, ON; Lakeland College in Vermillion, AB; and Northern Farm Training Institute in Hay River, NT. Following the completion of campus-based competitions, the top teams from each school will take part in a national competition in winter 2022. There is still time to sign your school up for the campus competition. Please contact CAHRC to find out more.

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About the Canadian Agricultural Human Resource Council:

The Canadian Agricultural Human Resource Council (CAHRC) works with industry leaders, governments and educational stakeholders to research, develop and communicate solutions to the challenges in employment and skills development in primary agriculture. For more information visit www.cahrc-ccrha.ca.

 Media Contact:

Lindsey Ehman
Communications and Stakeholder Engagement Specialist
Canadian Agricultural Human Resource Council
lehman@cahrc-ccha.ca
613-222-2726

About the Business + Higher Education Roundtable:

The Business + Higher Education Roundtable (BHER) is a non-partisan, not-for-profit organization bringing together some of Canada’s largest companies and leading post-secondary institutions. Since 2015, BHER has worked to harness the strengths of Canada’s business and post-secondary education sectors to build opportunities for young Canadians, boost innovation and drive collaboration. Learn more at www.bher.ca.

 Media Contact:

Tina Romito
Senior Manager, Communications
Business + Higher Education Roundtable
tina.romito@bher.ca
613-695-3511