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Published: Saturday, 3/7/2009

Career Camp to give residents ways to sharpen their job hunt

BLADE STAFF

Lisa Davis is updating her resume.

The 26-year-old woman has a job she enjoys as a driver for a food-vending company, but the firm has been laying people off and she's concerned.

"I'm getting my resume together just in case," she explained Friday at the Source, Lucas County's job placement center.

Ms. Davis is among the thousands of area residents who stand to benefit from a "Career Camp" The Blade and WTOL-TV, Channel 11 will sponsor next month in conjunction with the Source, Owens Community College, Lucas County, the Greater Toledo Urban League, SeaGate Convention Centre, and the United Way of Toledo.

The Career Camp will be held April 8 from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. at SeaGate. It is designed to, among other things, prepare job seekers for the May 1 Job Fair 2009 at the Lucas County Recreation Center.

"Our mission is to put people back to work," said Mitch Jacob, news director at Channel 11. "It's clear what's going on in the area. Layoff notices are going out to people every day. What can we do as two strong media organizations? Let's make sure people are tuned up and ready to go when those jobs do open up."

The Career Camp will offer workshops focusing on:

•How to navigate a job fair.

•Resume writing.

•Jobs of the future.•Interviewing techniques.

•Resume review.

Job seekers will have the opportunity to sound out dozens of educational and training institutions, including Penta Career Center, the University of Toledo, and Stautzenberger College.

Representatives from social service agencies also will be on hand to advise the unemployed about the benefits and services available to them.

County Commissioner Ben Konop described the Career Camp as "a much-needed stop" on the way to the job fair.

"I've been to China and New York City trying to talk people [employers] into coming to Toledo," he said.

"The number one question I get is, 'What kind of skills does your work force have?' We have a very hard-working work force, but we need to improve on preparing for the skills of the 21st century."

Ms. Davis said she is doing just that. She is studying to be a medical assistant and wants to be a nurse eventually, figuring those skills will be in greater demand.

A few steps away from her in the Resource Room at the Source yesterday was Virginia Goldstein, who was looking for a job as receptionist or secretary, or any position where she could put her skills with Microsoft Word to remunerative use.

She acknowledged that at 69, she is older than most job seekers.

"It's very hard here in Toledo to find a job," she said. "I've applied for hundreds. For every job, there are about 200 people."

Career Camp will have free parking at SeaGate, in the lot near Washington and Summit streets, and at the Source and the former Taylor Cadillac. Owens will operate a free shuttle service between the Source, 1301 Monroe St., and SeaGate.



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