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Hundreds show up for job fair

WorkSource Center hosts event in Valencia

Posted: August 6, 2011 1:30 a.m.
Updated: August 6, 2011 1:30 a.m.
 

More than 300 people met with employers at the Santa Clarita WorkSource Center’s job fair Friday.

The job fair, held between 10 a.m. and noon, attracted more than 200 job-seekers in the first hour alone, creating long lines that snaked along the corridors of the University Center at the College of the Canyons Valencia campus.

Unlike career fairs, which can be heavily populated by recruiters rather than companies offering actual jobs, the WorkSource Center Job Fair invited only companies with job openings, organizers said.

“The employers here actually have jobs available,” said Maurice Capillaire, business services representative with the WorkSource Center.

Just out of high school, Santa Clarita resident Jasmine Stephens, 18, attended the job fair seeking a permanent position that would pay more than minimum wage.

“It was really successful,” Stephens said. “There were about 20 different businesses here. It gave me hope.”

Another job-seeker leaving the job fair cheered those standing in line by announcing she had been able to secure two job interviews.

Jobs added
The 513-point plunge on the Dow Jones Industrial Average on Thursday led to widespread speculation over the possibility of a double-dip recession.

By Friday morning, however, good news arrived when the Labor Department announced 117,000 jobs had been added to the labor force in July.

The job number exceeded economists’ forecasts and was the best reported in three months.

By Friday, after trading volumes rose up and down, the Dow Jones closed up 61 points.

The added jobs dropped the nation’s unemployment rate to 9.1 percent. Economists estimate the real unemployment number is probably twice as high if those who have just given up on the job search effort are counted.

More than just a job
Eighteen employer companies met with job-seekers at the WorkSource Center’s job fair, including Sears Marketing Center, Verizon Wireless, The Art Institute of California, DDX Media and more.

Also at the job fair were five staffing firms seeking employees for their clients.

Dressed in a business suit, Rey Reyes, 34, of Newhall, attended the job fair seeking steady employment and the opportunity to find a professional position.

Work has been fairly slow and unreliable in the film industry, said the former production manager, coordinator and assistant director. Reyes was looking for a little more than what the job fair offered.

“It’s been really tough to get steady employment,” Reyes said. “I’ve had a bunch of temp jobs but am looking for something more than manufacturing or entry-level jobs.”

Discipline
With more than 100 people still waiting to meet with employers, Capillaire asked people in the job fair to finish collecting information from companies and keep moving along so others waiting could enter the room.

Although the job fair only ran for two hours, Laura Biery with the city of Santa Clarita said those standing in line would be guaranteed a chance to meet with employers.

But the organizers were capping off the line and wouldn’t allow late job-seekers showing up to join in the wait.

“It’s all about showing up on time and being prepared,” Biery said. “Just like a job.”

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