Job Market Trends and News

Fredericton student spends summer doing Homewurk

A Fredericton student's idea of getting more youth into the job market has paid off.

In June, Cameron Ritchie, who enters Grade 12 at Leo Hayes High School in the fall, started Homewurk, a service that connects other students with odd jobs.

"We've been getting calls left and right and I can't be more happy to see that," Ritchie said.

The service works by having customers call in their jobs, which vary, then matching them with students who have signed on to work during the summer.

Odd jobs

Ritchie said his goal is to give each worker a few jobs a week.

The jobs aren't full-time positions, just odd jobs. While this may not lend stability, it does mean workers are unlikely to get bored.

"The great part about this is it's not the same desk job every day," he said.

"One day you could be mowing a lawn, the next day you could be helping a lady set up her laptop. You could be scooping a pool, you could be throwing hay bales in the back of a truck. It's amazing."

Ritchie spends all day and much of the night working on the service. He gets up at 6 a.m. and often doesn't sleep until 1 a.m.

A lot of what he does is managerial in nature, connecting jobs with students and finding new clients, but he gets his hands dirty too.

"If there's some job right next door to me, I'll jump on it," Ritchie said. "I'll take it myself because I just love to experience what my workers are experiencing too."

Seeking college students

With the new school year quickly approaching, most of Ritchie's employees will be back in the classroom and unable to work. He hopes to remedy this by recruiting university and college students to keep the service going through the winter.

Ritchie said this could benefit the students by placing them in jobs related to their studies.

"If you're taking construction in college ... you can take jobs building a deck or that sort of stuff," said Ritchie.

Ritchie said this summer has left him with skills he didn't possess before and a greater knowledge of business.

"I'm 17 now and this is a completely new experience, so I'm constantly learning," said Ritchie.

Published by CBC NEWS