FAIRFIELD, ME [Nov. 7, 2018] – With a record-setting unemployment rate causing a significant workforce shortage, employers in Kennebec and Somerset counties increasingly tailor their recruitment strategies to high school and college students. On November 15th at the Kennebec Valley Community College (KVCC) Alfond campus in Hinckley, over 25 employers will exhibit at the Central Maine Career Expo, which expects to convene high school students from 12 area high schools and technical centers, as well as Kennebec Valley Community College students and the general job-seeking public.
Event information, including a complete list of participating organizations, can be found at www.centralmaine.org/central-maine-career-expo.
Hosted by Central Maine Growth Council, the Expo is sponsored by Mount St. Joseph Residence & Rehabilitation (MSJ) in Waterville, which recruits heavily from local college and university programs in health care, social work, geriatrics, and other disciplines. MSJ’s HR generalist Jill Lawrence explains, “Not only are we able to find synergies between these programs and our work, but we also tap into a very passionate group of young professionals who want to gain practical experience while serving people in need. MSJ’s mission is to be a compassionate and transforming healing presence within our community. We want to educate and empower young professionals whenever and wherever we can, which makes the Central Maine Career Expo a welcome and important event for us.”
Representing a range of industry, from manufacturing to health care, from technology to education, Central Maine Career Expo highlights the diversity of fulfilling, well-paying careers available in central Maine. Nearly half of all participating employers offer internships or employment to current high school students, and all but one employ high school graduates.
Strong connections between high school students and local businesses are important, explains Winslow High School JMG/MELMAC College and Career Pathway Specialist Judi-Ann Bouchard, because they “provide students with experiences that help them to gain a sense of direction and an understanding of how education is linked to their future goals and careers.”
Jessica Rodrigue, a College Success Specialist for Jobs for Maine Graduates (JMG) at KVCC, describes JMG as a workforce development pipeline. “We connect our students to employers across the state to strengthen Maine’s economy. Currently, JMG is working with over 500 businesses statewide and serving over 9,000 students in over 130 programs.”
KVCC’s Alfond campus provides a strategic location for the Expo; employers can easily access college students and the general public as well as workforce development resources. According to KVCC’s Director of Advising and Enrollment Teresa Smith, the college “can respond quickly to the needs of employers to provide training, through both our academic programs and our Workforce Training & Professional Development Division. Therefore, KVCC graduates are in high demand because they have the skill sets needed by today’s workforce.”
In addition, the Alfond campus is now home to the Northern Kennebec Valley CareerCenter, which provides a variety of employment and training services at no charge for Maine workers and businesses, states Linda Price, ETS IV at the CareerCenter. Businesses looking to fill their workforce needs or individuals looking to explore careers and improve job qualifications can call 207-474-4950 or visit 23 Stanley Road, KVCC Alfond Campus, Hinckley, Maine.
Employers interested in participating in the Central Maine Career Expo can contact Central Maine Growth Council (CMGC) at 207-680-7300. CMGC can also be of assistance to those employers unable to attend the Expo but still interested in exploring workforce recruitment strategies. CMGC’s partners for Central Maine Career Expo include: Jobs for Maine Graduates, Kennebec Valley Community College, KVCAP, Maine Dept. Labor, Northern Kennebec Valley CareerCenter, and Waterville Public Library.
Last modified: November 8, 2018