Clinton Nellist spoke to a class at Kwalikum Secondary recently about his experiences after graduation and his company Road to Employment.

Career education touted by Qualicum Beach grad

Clinton Nellist, now living in Montreal, spoke to a group of students in Qualicum Beach last week

You study hard, get good grades, do what everyone tells you, only to be ejected into the cold hard world at graduation.

That was Qualicum Beach’s Clinton Nellist’s experience graduating from UVic, so he and roommate Denis Luchyshyn created Road to Employment to help fellow grads.

“Upon graduating we both had a difficult time transitioning into the workforce. I got stuck in a bunch of sales jobs, sidewalk selling, door-to-door, retail at the mall,” he said of his long, hard struggles after graduating with a degree in political science and history in 2013.

“I wasn’t stoked about my employment situation, Dennis was having his own challenges and our friends were moving back into their parent’s basements to survive,” he said of his cohort’s general employment hopelessness.

“Looking around at the opportunities we had, we knew we had to be better prepared for the labour market, so Dennis and I quit our jobs, packed our lives into the back of a two-door Chevrolet to drive across the country for four months, couch surfing the whole way, filming a documentary about youth employment in Canada.”

The film ended up being a four part series called Road to Employment, which they parlayed into a media production and public speaking company.

The first two parts of the film are available on Youtube and on their website (http://roadtoemployment.ca), which they are developing into an extensive portal for all things youth employment.

The film and website are slick productions with a focus on concrete advice.

“Our goal was simple, to speak with fellow graduates, employers, career developers and identify actionable strategies to help you find meaningful and relevant work,” the opening narration of the film explains.

After their adventures driving from Victoria to Halifax, they stopped on their way home to finish the film in Montreal, and never left.

Now based in Montreal, the pair support themselves through the burgeoning company, including a number of high profile speaking engagements.

Nellist recently spoke to a class at Kwalikum Secondary, his former high school, “pro bono” while home for the holidays.

While critical of the graduation experience, he admits “I wasn’t very proactive with my education, which is a big part of why I suffered so much.”

“School teaches work ethic, the fundamentals of reading, writing and arithmetic, basic skills that we need and it teaches you how get down to work, but I think there’s not enough emphasis on career education and ‘what am I actually going to be doing with my learning’.”

“I wasn’t empowered or motivated to actually explore my career options, I was just told to focus on grades, get through your classes and worry about your career when you graduate.”

He said the common lack of engagement among students is a key part of the issue, thus part one of the film is “Engage,” hoping to help change that dynamic.

“We’re trying to put a very youthful, enthusiastic spin on what career education can be.”

Check out the company at http://roadtoemployment.ca.

Just Posted

Part Three: 10 questions with a Qualicum Beach historian

Local guide shares stories of town’s foundations

Andrew Scheer makes campaign stop in Parksville

Federal Conservative leader talks tax cuts, environment

2019 FEDERAL ELECTION: Meet the candidates for the Courtenay-Alberni riding

In an effort to inform the Courtenay-Alberni riding constituents, we have supplied… Continue reading

VIDEO: Prosecutors to consider charges in human-caused 2017 B.C. wildfire

RCMP forwards results of its investigation into Elephant Hill fire to Crown counsel

Bear killed in Kimberley after chasing girl, wreaking havoc on town

This particular brown-coloured bear has been the subject of many calls this summer; very food habituated, CO says

Vancouver Island man bikes through B.C. Interior for mental health, addiction awareness

Vancouver Island Resident Mat Fee is approaching the final phase of his cross-Canada bike journey to raise awareness about addiction recovery.

Police investigate after intoxicated teens clash with security at B.C. fair

18-year-old woman arrested and RCMP looking at possible assault in Victoria-area fall fair incident

BC SPCA investigating after three dogs found shot dead in Prince George ditch

The three adult dogs appeared to be well cared for before being found with gunshot wounds, BC SPCA says

Boy overdosed on illicit anti-anxiety drug found on Kelowna classroom floor, RCMP say

Noah Mills, 8, ingested a pink powdery substance off his Kelowna classroom floor

Psychiatric assessment ordered for man accused in Salmon Arm church shooting

Lawyer tells court accused was diagnosed with psychosis hours after his arrest

Surrey mom allegedly paid $400,000 for son in U.S. college bribery scam

Xiaoning Sui, 48, was arrested in Spain on Monday night

Winnipeg student, killed in bus crash, remembered as passionate, kind

University of Victoria student Emma Machado, 18, was killed in the bus crash near Bamfield on Friday

Most Read