Jonathan Blais, western region director of corporate development and administration with Vegpro International (Salade Etcetera Inc. addresses a group of job seekers at the Vernon Job Fair on April 10. The event, hosted by Community Futures, WorkBC and NexusBC Community Resources, included 40 employers and attracted more than 500 job seekers. (Erin Christie/Morning Star)

Vernon Job Fair attracts record number of employers and job seekers

Vegpro, Peace River Hydro Partners prove big attractions for local job seekers

More than 600 people are looking for work in Vernon – as evident by the number in attendance at the third annual job fair Tuesday.

Lee Brinkman, marketing coordinator with NexusBC Community Resource Centre, who co-hosted the event in partnership with Community Futures and WorkBC, said after three years that number didn’t surprise her.

What did surprise her was the amount of enthusiasm.

“The fair kicked off at 10 a.m. — by 10:15, 135 people had come through the door, resumes in hand,” Brinkman said.

This year’s event also attracted a record number of employers — 4o, in total. And Brinkman said she has a waiting list with more employers hoping to register for next year.

She feels this is indicative of a strong local economy.

“We don’t just have people looking for work, we also have a lot of companies hiring for a variety of positions,” she said.

“I think that’s great — it shows we are open for business.”

The fair included employers from fields such as agriculture, government, health care, hospitality, retail, trades, and technology; and employer presentations from BC Corrections, Sun Life Financial, Salade Etcetera! Inc., Sparkling Hill Resorts, PRT, Peace River Hydro Partners, Universal Packaging and the Canadian Armed Forces.

Among the busiest booths at the job fair, Brinkman noted, were Vegpro and Peace River Hydro Partners, both of which she said people were inquiring about upon arrival.

Another busy booth was first-time presenter, Shambhala Music Festival.

Katie Kershaw, recruitment coordinator with the popular Nelson-based event said she currently has 500 positions to fill.

“We have tons of positions available right now — everything from bathroom crew to beverage kiosks,” she said.

Kershaw said the jobs aren’t all glamorous, but they are paid positions and employees usually get to catch the shows.

“It’s a fun way to earn cash,” she added.

Greg Day said earning cash wasn’t necessarily the only thing that drew him to Kershaw’s booth.

Day, a paramedic who recently relocated to the area from Alberta, said he’s hoping to assist medical services at Shambhala and stopped to inquire about volunteer opportunites at the festival.

He said he came to the job fair in hopes of finding a second job for the summer.

To learn more about who’s hiring, or for more resources visit http://www.nexusbc.ca/jobseekers.htm

Erin Christie

Morning Star Staff


@VernonNews
erin.christie@vernonmorningstar.com

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