SFU Surrey student Jaspreet Lehal will share his views and ideas about the future of B.C.’s economy at the university's first youth forum.

Youth tackle B.C.’s economy at SFU Surrey forum

Public Square's Our Future, Our Voice Youth Forum takes place Saturday at the Surrey campus.

Nearly 150 young people plan on attending Simon Fraser University’s first youth forum in Surrey on Saturday (Sept. 28), their numbers challenging the notion that youth are uninterested in shaping their collective future.

“It’s often said that youth are disconnected from and apathetic about the political process and politics, in general,” says SFU Surrey Beedie School of Business student Japreet Lehal, a university student senator who, with other participants, will share his views and ideas about the future of B.C.’s economy during the day-long event.

“Forums like these will, in fact, help to instill in students the importance of civic engagement, while giving them the opportunity to discuss their concerns. The reality is, it is our future. We need a voice.”

SFU Public Square’s Our Future, Our Voice Youth Forum is being held at SFU’s Surrey campus Saturday from 10 a.m.  until 4:30 p.m. Registration for the event is nearly full but interested young people between the ages of 16 and 25 can still be accommodated.

SFU Beedie student Amit Bhagat will also be among participants. He hopes to hear what youth of all ages have to say.

“I’m interested in listening to the views of high school and university students of different backgrounds and life experiences,” says Bhagat, who studies in Surrey and is also a member of the TELUS Vancouver Community Board.

“As a student I sometimes feel I get caught up in the bubble that is SFU Beedie and welcome this chance to step outside and hear what others are thinking.”

The forum was created from the input of youth over the course of several “idea jams” held earlier this year at each of SFU’s three campuses.

“The forum is designed for youth, by youth, and will provide a chance for them to grapple with economic issues, make new connections and also contribute to a Citizen’s Agenda for B.C.’s Economic Future,” says Jackie Pichette, research and communications officer for SFU Public Square.

“We heard loud and clear that youth want an opportunity to ask questions of decision makers, they’re concerned about what kind of job prospects lay ahead, they’d like to participate throughout the day using Twitter, they want a chance to share ideas and meet new people. They want to have influence and be heard.”

Participants will join in interactive activities, meet community representatives and ask questions of decision makers. A panel discussion will feature federal, local and regional government representatives. Peter Fassbender, B.C.’s Minster of Education, is among those invited.

Kai Nagata, a journalist and documentary filmmaker, will be facilitating the event and moderating the panel.

Community representatives from health and business industries, academia, media and more will be available to casually discuss their careers and economic perspectives with participants over lunch.

During roundtable dialogues, the participants will come up with strategies for creating wealth, promoting social equity, and protecting the environment, to be shared at a public event Oct. 3.

Thoughts and questions will also be shared throughout the day via Twitter using the hashtag #OurVoiceBC.

Participation is free (including lunch) but registration is required at sfu2013youthforum.eventbrite.ca

The event is part of SFU Public Square’s 2013 Community Summit: Charting BC’s Economic Future. Visit www.sfu.ca/publicsquare for more information on the SFU Public Square and the 2013 Community Summit.

Surrey North Delta Leader

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

All Safe Surrey Coalition council members must ‘step up’ over ‘bad taste’ tweets, rivals say

Slate’s posts on social media in ‘bad taste,’ councillor says

After 40 years on the job, White Rock’s fire chief retires

From flood to fire, Phil Lemire has been at the forefront whenever disaster struck

Surrey sports groups grapple with refunds, registration, restrictions and more

‘Our biggest problem is going to be retraining the public because they can’t be there’

Low-cost bicycle repair shop opens in Cloverdale

Cloverdale Community Cycles starts up in church parking lot

First degree murder charge laid in South Surrey shooting death

Wayne Duncan, 46, was killed on Sept. 6, 2019

VIDEO: A Vancouver Island black bear takes weekend nap in eagle tree

Videos captured by Terry Eissfeldt shows the bear arriving Saturday night and sleeping in on Sunday

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

We’re asking you to lock arms with us, as we look to better days ahead

NDP getting COVID-19 wage subsidy ‘indirectly,’ B.C. Liberal leader says

B.C. NDP says Andrew Wilkinson is wrong about federal link

Parent, superintendent, trustee report smooth return to classrooms in B.C.

The biggest challenge is convincing families that it’s safe, some say

Two more COVID-19 cases reported by Langley long term care facility

One resident, one staffer have tested positive for the coronavirus

George Floyd asphyxiated by sustained pressure: family autopsy

Death sparked a wave of protests across the U.S. and abroad

Suspect sought in alleged assault, hate crime on Metro Vancouver bus: transit police

The woman then allegedly punched the teenager in the head multiple times

COVID-19: B.C. commercial landlords can’t evict if they decline rent assistance

Emergency order ‘incentive’ for federal program, Carole James says

Most Read