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Apprenticeship competition aims to draw attention to looming shortage of skilled trades workers in Canada

Adrian Schut came from a family of scientists and PhD recipients. In high school, he earned math marks in the 90s and won competitions in robotics technology. By all accounts, he seemed destined for an academic career. Teachers encouraged him to become an engineer.

When he decided to pursue a career in carpentry, his parents remained supportive but teachers’ support soured.

“You’re wasting your life,” they told him.

Perhaps as a result of that negative stigma, the construction industry says it is facing a looming shortage of skilled trades workers. Indeed, Canada is estimated to need one million skilled trades workers by 2020 and the residential housing industry alone is expected to require nearly 100,000 more by 2023...

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