Students explore careers at #BCTECH Summit

43 students from SD 91 travelled down to #BCTECH Summit in Vancouver recently

VANCOUVER – 43 students from SD 91 travelled down to #BCTECH Summit in Vancouver recently alongside B.C.’s next generation of tech talent to explore exciting career opportunities in B.C.’s technology sector.

“This generation represents tomorrow’s software developers, technology entrepreneurs, and innovators,” said Premier Christy Clark. “B.C.’s technology sector is growing fast, which means incredible career opportunities for these students, and the chance to build a career right here at home.”

Approximately 1,500 B.C. secondary and post-secondary school students attending the summit got to learn what technology programs are available from colleges and universities, hear inspiring tech leaders share how technology is changing the world and meet representatives from innovative innovative technology companies in British Columbia.

Students heard thirteen year-old Tanmay Bakshi, honorary IBM Cloud Adviser, share his personal story of learning to code from age five, and how he developed his first iPhone app by the time he was nine years old.

Karina LeBlanc, former Canadian soccer goalkeeper and UNICEF Ambassador, hosted a session along with Lane Merrifield, co-founder of educational engagement platform Fresh Grade and Disney’s virtual game Club Penguin. A morning scavenger hunt transformed technology career exploration into a game for the students, using QuestUpon’s augmented reality mobile app. The game encourages students to connect occupations and skills with tech industry sub-sectors, and interact with over 40 exhibitors throughout the summit. Other speakers included Awake Labs CEO Andrea Palmer and ShareShed Founder Daniel Dubois.

The #BCTECH Summit compliments the provincial government’s #BCTECH Strategy, which is a key component of the BC Jobs Plan to support the growth of B.C.’s vibrant technology sector and strengthen British Columbia’s diverse innovation economy.

The multi-year strategy includes a $100-million BC Tech Fund and initiatives to increase talent development through new curriculum and coding, and market access for tech companies that is driving innovation and productivity throughout the province. For more information, visit: http://bctechsummit.ca

“We’ve set the stage for tomorrow’s talent in the #BCTECH Strategy by establishing coding for the K-12 curriculum and placing an increased emphasis on co-ops at the post-secondary level. The #BCTECH Summit makes post-secondary education and career exploration fun and engaging, encouraging students to consider their future place in the tech sector” said Mike Bernier, Minister of Education.

Quick Facts:

• B.C.’s tech sector employment eclipsed 100,000 for the first time in 2015, rising 2.9% to 101,780.

• Technology salaries are 75% higher than B.C.’s industrial average and 7% higher than the Canadian average.

– files from Ministry of Technology, Innovation and Citizens’ Services