ON THE JOB HUNT57 employers on tap for 14th annual job fair

Published 11:00 pm Saturday, August 4, 2012

Organizers of the 14th annual Vicksburg Area Job Fair said a few more companies at this year’s event could make a dent in high unemployment rates statewide and in Warren County.

Tuesday’s job fair at the Vicksburg Convention Center will feature 57 employers. Last year’s fair brought out 1,000 job-seekers, fewer than the previous two fairs but no less indicative of the weak economy’s effect on jobs in the state, Adam Todd, director of the Governor’s Job Fair Network of Mississippi, the event’s sponsor said.

“With this many organizations and the way the economy is going, it would be real difficult to turn away from this opportunity if I’m a job-seeker,” said Todd.

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Among the companies participating are the FBI, the U.S. Army, AmeriCorps, the Vicksburg police and fire departments, and Hinds Community College. Local businesses such as Ameristar, DiamondJacks and Riverwalk casinos, River Region Health System, International Paper, Outlets at Vicksburg and Walmart SuperCenter are planning to send recruiters.

Unemployment in Warren County was 10.9 percent in June, up from 10.1 percent in May, according to the Mississippi Department of Employment Security. The local rate has been in double digits for 18 of the past 20 months. Statewide, the jobless rate was 9.8 percent in June, up from 8.9 percent in May.

Todd said applicants should bring a resumé and wear appropriate clothes during interviews, often held on the spot with employers looking for the best prospects.

“I’m not saying to wear a suit, but just look sharp,” Todd said, adding the fair gives a chance for some face time with a potential employer instead of just an impersonal, online application.

“They really need to spend adequate time in front of that recruiter,” Todd said.