College focused on training workers as new labour market outlook forecasts more than one million jobs

By College Relations | February 8, 2023

Okanagan College's campus in Penticton.
Okanagan College wants to help people living across the region map out their education, skills training, and career paths

With more than 120,000 job openings expected in the Thompson-Okanagan in the next decade, Okanagan College wants to help people living across the region map out their education, skills training, and career paths.

B.C.’s latest Labour Market Outlook was unveiled today and over the ten-year forecast period shows regional employment demand increasing by 1.4 per cent on average each year for the next decade.

The top industries in Thompson-Okanagan by job openings include retail trade (excluding cars, online shopping and personal care), hospitals, food services and drinking places, business and building support services (excluding travel) and nursing and residential care facilities.

“This labour market outlook confirms what we’re hearing from industry and communities across the region,” said OC President Dr. Neil Fassina. “There are areas of the workforce that are facing staffing shortages and in need of workers. We are targeting those industries to offer training opportunities that will help people right across the Okanagan and Shuswap enhance their skills and their careers.”

Okanagan College offers a range of apprenticeship certificates and diploma/certificate programs aligned to occupations identified in the 2022 Labour Market Outlook, such as cooks, automotive technicians, carpenters, nurse aides, administrative officers and more.

Additionally, OC has wide variety of shorter course offerings and certificate training aimed at filling critical gaps in the workforce through its Continuing Studies and Corporate Training department. The College works with community and industry partners to identify areas of the workforce facing pressures, to create new training opportunities aligned to local and regional needs.

In the past year Okanagan College has released new course offerings to assist industries with staffing needs including in the hospitality and construction sectors.

Many programs offer industry recognized certificates or micro-credentials and are available in the Continuing Studies Winter/Spring Brochure 2023 brochure. Interested in learning more? Browse featured programs online at

“What this labour market analysis tells us is that now is an excellent time for many people to strengthen their skills in real-world programs that will help them grow their careers in their chosen fields, or step into new fields where opportunities are emerging,” added Fassina.



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