With the school year coming to a close, many southwest students are considering getting a summer job or are already applying.

Youth can begin working at the age of 16, or with the completion of the Young Worker Readiness Certificate Course, can begin at the age of 14 or 15. 

Glen McRorie, executive director of the Employment Standards Branch with the Ministry of Labour Relations and Workplace Safety, notes that the course can be completed online.

"We see a spike in our Young Worker Readiness Certificates being issued in May and June," said McRorie. "We think this is an important time of year to promote that so young people looking for work are organized and have the course ahead of time."

The online course combines three interactive modules focusing on employment standards, occupational health and safety, and workplace responsibilities. 

"It will take a few hours or a couple of hours to do, then they get a certificate printed out, and they have to provide that to the employer along with parental approval before they start work," he added. 

The provincial government notes that over 187,000 certificates have been issued in the past 14 years. 

Youths interested in taking the course can visit Saskatchewan.ca to receive their certification for free.

"We see this as an important aspect of preparing young people for their first work experience," McRorie concluded.