A new report by the Conference Board of Canada says getting more First Nations and Métis people into the workforce will be an important part of the province’s future success.

The report was written by The Saskatchewan Institute and involves experts from the U of S, the U of R, SIAST and SIIT.

Institute director Diana MacKay says one of the main concerns is ensuring Aboriginal students graduate from high school and continue on into meaningful employment.

MacKay says one of the report’s key recommendations deals with the role of business in education.

“We need businesses in the province to fuel these schools with a little bit more private sector investment, help the public sector get the job done, and that’s one message of the report, its not just the federal or provincial governments’ jobs to ensure that the schools have everything they need, businesses can do quite a bit too,” she says.

MacKay adds part of that investment could be direct involvement with students.

“Businesses can create financial supports for enriched academic experiences for extra-curricular programs, businesses can help mentor kids as they are going through their high school, businesses can provide internships and apprenticeships and co-op opportunities,” she says.

She says Aboriginal young people who find meaningful employment become contributing members of their communities and neighbourhoods.