by Princess Fanning
I recently attended the Veterans Career Fair sponsored by DEED. Many vets have been away from home for so long it actually takes a while for some to readjust to living like an everyday person again. And it can be discouraging for some veterans who come back from combat or serving overseas and can’t find a job. This Career Fair gives those veterans an opportunity to network and find job leads to further their opportunities.
Mark Tessmer, one of DEED Veteran’s Employment Representatives, told me about the different branches of the military, like the Navy, Army, Air Force and Coast Guard. For a veteran to get help with employment services, they must have served six months or more on active duty and have met the minimum service and discharge requirements. I learned that serving in the military can be a great opportunity to serve your county, support different countries and people, and stand up for what’s right. Being a troop isn’t just about who’s winning the war, it’s knowing you’re able to do something life changing and, all the while, loving what you do.
During the Career Fair veterans could visit with over 100 employer booths, including companies like Target, Sam’s Club, HealthPartners, the Department of Transportation, and Concordia University. They provided company and job information for each veteran. Some business representatives even had stories about how they were once unemployed veterans and are now executive directors or managers of these businesses!
As a jobseeker, you may never know who may be there or if you’ll get hired on the spot. So it’s important to be prepared. Here are some tips when coming to a career or job fair:
- Bring copies of your resume.
- Dress to impress.
- Have friendly body language, like good posture and a firm handshake. And don’t forget to smile!
- Bring list of references. You never know when an employer might ask.
- And the most important—ask questions.
This Career Fair really benefits those veterans who need help finding work. I was proud to represent DEED at the event and support the U.S. troops!
Princess Fanning is a part of the STEP-UP Achieve program with a summer internship in the Labor Market Information Office and Workforce Development Division at the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development.