Student Spotlight: New Brunswick Labour Force Participation

Author: NB-IRDT Staff

 Posted on 02 Nov 2020

Student Pathways to Professions

From May to August 2020, NB-IRDT hosted the very first Pathways to Professions : an experiential learning program that provided six UNB students with hands-on workplace experience and training in research methods and job readiness. Each month, our Student Spotlight series will highlight some of the students’ research findings on the population demographics and economic progress of New Brunswick.


The size of a region’s labour force is typically affected by the makeup of the population. In New Brunswick, the general population is aging, while the youth population is shrinking. What could these factors mean for labour force participation in NB? 

This summer, Pathways to Professions student Thomas Campbell examined labour force participation rates in NB. As part of the BoostNB initiative to measure the province’s progress toward economic goals, he looked at whether NB labour force participation rates are on track to reach the national average by 2028, based on past and present trends. 

Read Thomas’s full report to view the status of this economic goal and visit boostnb.com for access to more student-led reports on the NB economy. 

Meet the Researcher

Thomas Campbell is a software engineering student at UNB, minoring in electrical engineering. Since he grew up in New Brunswick, the research he conducted on the state of the province’s economy really hit home for him. Thomas is keen on honing his technical skills to better the world around him, and he credits Pathways to Professions with allowing him to gain a thorough understanding of what exactly research entails, how research questions should be investigated, how to conduct data analysis, and how to effectively present research findings.