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White collar work: Career ambitions of Fiji final year school students


Pam Nilan 
School of Humanities and Social Sciences, University of Newcastle, Australia 
pamela.nilan@newcastle.edu.au

Paula Cavu 
The Learning Centre, Fiji Institute of Technology, Fiji 
cavu_p@fit.ac.fj
 

Isimeli Tagicakiverata 
The Learning Centre, Fiji Institute of Technology, Fiji 
tagi_i@fit.ac.fj
 

Emily Hazelman 
The Learning Centre, Fiji Institute of Technology, Fiji 
hazelman_e@fit.ac.fj

 

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Abstract

The career ambitions of 1012 pupils in the final years of secondary schooling in Fiji were surveyed. The range of careers they nominated was very narrow, with teaching, nursing and other white collar work in the majority of responses. This stands in somewhat stark contrast to projected labour force needs, and the current serious shortage of skilled workers in key growth industries. Data on factors influencing pupil career choice indicated that over 80 per cent knew someone about the kind of job they were aiming for, and that many of these people were adults in their local environment. This finding emphasises the role schools must play if the skilled human resource potential of Fiji is to be realised. Schools in which a well-supported technical and vocational training program (TVET) was established tended to show much wider career ambitions, not only for TVET students but also for students in the academic strands. 

School-leavers, career ambitions, local influences, technical vocational education training, TVET, Mathematics

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 Nilan, P., Cavu, P., Tagicakiverata, I. and Hazelman, E. (2006). White collar work: Career ambitions of Fiji final year school students. International Education Journal, 7 (7), 895-905.
http://iej.com.au

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