Transitioning beyond high school: a case study of student expectations in Vernon, British Columbia

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(Thesis) M.A.
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Transitional expectations of youth, as they anticipate entrance to the job market, are shaped by broad socioeconomic trends and by place, that is, where they live. This thesis examines youth transitional expectations in Vernon, British Columbia, specifically with respect to high school students at Clarence Fulton Secondary. Conceptually, the study frames expectations in terms of a model that distinguishes immediate and distant logics, and with respect to broad shifts towards flexibility in the Canadian economy. Empirically, the study draws on a questionnaire (n = 19) of grade 12 students and interviews with selected students, teachers, and career counsellors. Research reveals expectations of youth to be shaped by place-based influences and broader trends. Surprisingly in terms of labour market demands, and the region’s desirability, many students want to leave. Generally, the distinctions between work and school, as well as between the immediate and distant logic of expectations are becoming blurred.
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