Vets job fair means something different when Ga. unemployment low

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People 2 People: July 21, 2018

With unemployment low, a jobs fair for veterans on Thursday may offer a different kind of opportunity than when the economy is struggling, organizers said.

More than 100 companies will participate in the event, to be held at Mercedes Benz Stadium, many of them with multiple job openings, said Robert Walker, event director for RecruitMilitary.

"There will be everything from entry-level up to management positions," he said.

But at 3.8 percent, the current jobless rate for veterans is slightly lower than the national average. That compares to an unemployment rate that crested at 9.9 percent in the post-recession years when employers had their pick of job candidates.

There’s a lot more choice now for workers.

“It may be that somebody is under-employed and wants more,” said Walker, an Army vet. “It may be that this gives something of a better opportunity. It is also a great chance for networking, even if you already have a job.”

According to surveys taken by RecruitMilitary of attendees at its job fairs, about 25 percent of those who attend the events get a job offer or at least a second interview, Walker said.

There are about 750,000 veterans in Georgia, according to the state's Department of Veterans' Services.

On average, vets are doing slightly better than other Americans in the workplace, according to the most recent data from the government.

In that survey, the median earnings of a working male veteran was $50,000. For a female vet, the median income was about $40,000.

The event, which runs from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., is free to veterans and their spouses. Companies that participate pay a fee, Walker said. Vets who want to register in advance can register online.

Among the companies are Arrow Exterminators, the Atlanta Police Department, Kroger, Intel, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, Oracle, the U.S. Postal Service and WellStar Health System.


Veterans 

In the United States: about 18.6 million

In Georgia: about 750,000

Current: 3.8 percent

High, January 2011: 9.9 percent

Low, May 2000: 2.3 percent

Source: Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis

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