By Lisa R. RhodesFebruary 25, 2011
FORT GEORGE G. MEADE, Md. -- As adults vie for jobs in a competitive job market, teens may wonder if they will be able to land a part-time or summer job.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics at the Department of Labor, the unemployment rate for the county is currently 6.3 percent.
But at the installation's annual Fort Meade Community Teen Job Fair on March 3, more than 40 employers will offer real job and volunteer opportunities for qualified teens in the hope that they develop marketable professional and personal skills.
The event is targeted to young people age 14 to 20 and will be held at McGill Training Center from 3 to 6 p.m.
The theme for the job fair is "Defying the Odds."
"I wanted teens to have a positive message to focus on as they thought about jobs and work experience," said Vikki Torrence, Employment Readiness Program manager at Army Community Service.
The job fair is co-sponsored by ACS; Child, Youth and School Services; the Directorate of Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation; and the Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation Workforce Division/Anne Arundel Workforce Development Corporation.
Some of the opportunities that will be available range from a law apprenticeship with the Department of Justice and an art apprenticeship with the Art Institute of Washington, to working as a pool manager at DRD Pool Management or volunteering at the Odenton Fire Department. The National Security Agency and the Defense Information Systems Agency will also participate in the fair.
Jamesinaez James, Employment Readiness Program assistant at ACS, said the Teen Job Fair is an effort to "make sure every population in the community is served."
To help young people prepare for the job market, the Fort Meade Teen Center sponsors a series of employment readiness seminars tailored specifically to youths.
At the Teen Job Fair, Deputy Installation Commander John Moeller; Kirkland Murray, CEO of the Anne Arundel Workforce Development Corporation; and Andre James, labor exchange administrator at the Anne Arundel County One Stop Career Center, will welcome the more than 250 young people from Fort Meade and the surrounding community who are expected to attend.
Throughout the event there will be quick career-tip sessions. Julie Yates, Life Skills/Family Employment Program manager at the Navy Fleet and Family Support Center, will offer a session on how to handle a job interview; Veronica Boreland, an employment services specialist at Anne Arundel Community College, who will provide tips on preparing a resume and job application; and Yasmin Anderson-Smith, an image consultant, will discuss the importance of effective verbal and nonverbal communication. Participants will also learn how to apply for a work permit.
Young people are advised to bring copies of their resume, job references, two pens and a note pad to the fair. James said a positive attitude and the appropriate business attire are also a must.
"We as a team would like for the participants to feel empowered and understand that they are our future," James said. "We want them to know there are opportunities for them to gain the skills to be successful at whatever they like to do in life."
For more information about the Fort Meade Community Teen Job Fair, call the Employment Readiness Program at Army Community Service at 301-677-5590.