A local job seeker submitted her resume to one of the 48 area employers during a job fair Tuesday at Mount Washington College in Salem. An hour after opening its doors, some 150 hopeful applicants had passed through the fair. (APRIL GUILMET PHOTO)
Job fair in Salem attracts hundreds looking for work
"It's a pretty tight situation right now," said the Derry resident, who once oversaw a staff of 135 employees. "At this point, I'd take anything connected with customer service. That's what I've been doing all these years."
Sponsored by the NH Department of Employment Security, the event matched potential employees with representatives from 48 employers and community partners, running the full gamut of fields and industries, including various educational opportunities.
Ryan Jenson, the school's executive director, said he was pleased that the new college, housed in the buildings that were once Hesser College, was able to work closely with state Labor Commissioner George Copadis, along with other state employment officials.
According to Copadis, the state unemployment rates are showing steady drops, though he said unemployment rates in the southern part of the state do tend to run slightly higher than state average, as the area is more densely populated.
"There are a lot of good jobs out there, and employers are hiring," he said. "Having events like this one truly benefits both the employers and the job seekers."
Kristin Dube, lead admissions counselor for the Job Corps program, said jobs are still particularly hard to come by for younger workers, leading more to considering a stint in the Corps.
A decade ago, Dube said it was mostly the younger teens that expressed interest in the program, but nowadays things have changed a bit.
Salem job seeker Paula Quigley agreed with that last sentiment.
In May, Quigley was laid off from her paralegal job when the firm she'd been working with for several years was downsized.
"I'm putting my feelers out right now," she said.