Will remaining in the EU give us more opportunities for work, for trade, for education, for co-operation than leaving?
Being in the EU gives us more than direct economic benefits. Part of the being in the single market means we enjoy the benefit of the Free movement of persons. As we pointed out to the young student, this means that students from the UK can study at Universities in the EEA (EU + EFTA countries) on the same terms as students from those countries. It means that works from the UK can work anywhere in the EEA without being discriminated against (except in some circumstances where knowledge of the language is critical, as in medicine), remember the TV series Auf Wiedersehen, Pet? It also means pensioners can retire to Spain or France. Many UK citizens have made use of these rights and there are about 2.2 million Brits who for at least part of the year, live work or study elsewhere in the EU. This compares to the 2.3 million citizens of other EU countries who live, work or study in the UK[ii]
It is not just people who benefit from the opportunities being in the EU. Companies in the UK can tender for work anywhere in the EEA and many do. Not just in manufacturing, bust also in services & finance, British companies are look for customers & opportunities across Europe, providing work for people here in the UK.
All this would be at risk if we leave the EU. The opportunities for young British people to expand horizons by studying abroad, the opportunities for British people to work anywhere across Europe would be curtailed & the opportunities for our companies to tender for contracts & openings in the EU will be diminished. Is this what you want?