CHINA> Regional
Shanghai Expo to hire 1m volunteers
By Qian Yanfeng (China Daily)
Updated: 2009-03-26 09:02

SHANGHAI: As a college student about to graduate in Shanghai this year, Yu Min is still looking for a job. But she does not feel as much pressure as her peers. She has had her plan well knit.

The 23-year-old from the Shanghai University of Science and Technology said she wanted to sign up for the Shanghai World Expo volunteer program, which would give her "some experience to build necessary social skills" while getting involved in "such an exciting" event.

Should she fail to get her hands on a satisfactory job this year, "at least I would have something to do as an Expo volunteer, and I believe there is really much to learn from this world-class event, which hopefully will pave the way for my career in the future".

To Yu's delight, the 2010 expo kicks off its volunteer recruitment program in May this year. More than 1 million volunteers eager to be part of a global event will be hired.

Chen Zhenmin, director of the Shanghai World Expo Social Mobilization Office, said yesterday that while most volunteers would be chosen from among college students, people from all walks of life were welcome to join.

During the 184-day event that lasts from May 1 to Oct 31, volunteers will serve 14 to 20 days on average, he said. But authorities might consider extending the period in view of the public's passionate and enthusiastic response.

Authorities said the expo would provide 2,000 to 3,000 jobs for college graduates this year, meeting the event's need for personnel as well as providing employment in the wake of the economic meltdown.

"A large number of people would be trained in verbal in international cultural communication, which is going to help the city in the future," said Xu Weiguo, deputy Party chief of Shanghai World Expo Coordination Bureau.