Thousands of resumes submitted

Published 12:00 am Saturday, August 19, 2006

NATCHEZ &8212; The Great River Regional Job Fair lived up to expectations for employers and job seekers Tuesday.

The fair saw 380 job seekers pass through the Natchez Convention Center doors in the first 30 minutes, some in hopes of starting a new life.

Sixty-eight employers displayed tables with information and items in hopes of luring new employees. Approximately 1,300 job seekers were on hand and 4,200 resumes were submitted at the fair, job fair committee member Peggy Ballard said.

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&8220;This is a very impressive crowd and I have been really impressed with the number of people here,&8221; the Offshore Drilling Company&8217;s representative Brad Eason said. &8220;This fair is about twice as big as the job fairs I&8217;ve been to and hopefully we can put some of these individuals to work.&8221;

Employers with job offers in administration, construction, corrections, truck driving and law enforcement were just some of the companies offering jobs Tuesday. Riverboat operations, education and maintenance opportunities also represented a small portion of job opportunities.

Jobs in all forms at the fair presented different scenarios to all. Brian Adams, who has been in Portugal playing professional basketball, said he was just looking out for the rest of his life.

&8220;I think there is a lot of information here for people of all ages,&8221; he said. &8220;I didn&8217;t expect to see this many older people here, but everyone here is trying to prepare for the rest of their lives.&8221;

Employers talked throughout the day and handed out applications to anyone who wanted one. Army Sergeant 1st Class, Geisha Wallace said her table was different because of the job requirements.

&8220;You see a lot of people coming through here who are afraid of this table so we have to approach them,&8221; she said. &8220;Some just pass us by and I see them walk clear on the other side of the table.&8221;

Wallace said the Army could currently offer over 200 jobs, depending on qualifications and those aged 17 to 42 were eligible. Despite this, most passed the table &8220;because of the fear of the unknown or what they see on TV,&8221; she said.

Carl Ferguson, representative for ACE training center, said employees wanting a truck-driving career could begin at approximately $35,000.

&8220;I go to any job fair that Joe Buckner puts on,&8221; Ferguson said. &8220;I have had a good many stop and talk to me and we just try to place people in jobs and keep them out there working.&8221;

Governor&8217;s job fair network Director, Joe Buckner said he thought the fair went very smoothly.

&8220;It&8217;s been great for both the employers and those looking for jobs,&8221; he said. &8220;We just have an outstanding group of employers with not just jobs, but great career opportunities.&8221;