Earlier today I posted an article from the Sun, talking about how some people think the ESL industry in Vancouver is in for a major hit. I've heard a lot of anecdotes from school directors saying that bookings are holding up. I was looking at the WYSE site earlier today - it is an awesome source for industry reports and surveys - and they have a new report up about the impact of the recession/depression on our sector. I hate to spoil the ending, but here's a bit from the conclusion:
Business prospects for the first four months of 2009 tend to be negative, with most companies, sectors and regions expecting the fall in business to continue. Companies in Asia and North America were the most pessimistic about their prospects, with North American companies expecting things to get worse in 2009 even after the 10% drop in the last quarter of 2008. Companies in retail, language study and work experience/volunteer travel were the most pessimistic about their business prospects for 2009.
The decline in sales in the work experience sector was 4.5% in the last quarter of 2008 - though providers expect it to hold steady for the next quarter. One thing I am certain is different here in Vancouver - the report says the biggest worry of Work Experience providers is the precipitous decline in work placement availability. Not so in BC. There are internships and jobs - people are still hiring. I've been out at a dozen companies in the last few days - they're all still hiring interns, a few even gave me referrals.
You can download the full report here [pdf].