10/09/2014 11:08 EDT | Updated 10/10/2014 04:59 EDT

Edmonton Population Is Young, Optimistic: Report

It’s a pretty good time to be a young person in Edmonton.

The Alberta capital’s population is getting younger and happier, says a new report released by the Edmonton Social Planning Council and the Edmonton Community Foundation.

The median age of an Edmonton resident is 36 -- putting it four years below the national average of 40.6 and making it the youngest major Canadian city, states the report.

“In terms of being a young city, it’s probably mostly tied to the fact that we have a lot of people moving here and we’ve been creating quite a bit of employment,” the Edmonton Social Planning Council’s John Kolkman told 630 CHED.

From 2003 to 2013, Edmonton added 172,000 new jobs, the report says.

And young Edmontonians seem pretty optimistic, too. Over 74 per cent of responding youth agreed with the statement, “I am confident that I am on track to achieve my goals.”

Gaspard Momba , 26, moved to Edmonton from the Democratic Republic of Congo about three years ago, reports the Edmonton Journal. He is currently taking high school courses at NorQuest College and hopes to stay in Edmonton long term.

“In Edmonton, there’s always an opportunity,” he told the paper. “Whatever you want to do, when you get yourself connected, you can.”

But there is still room for improvement. Even though the city has a lot of jobs, many of them offer low wages, Kolkman told CHED. This can be a challenge for youth trying to break into the workforce, he added.

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