Rhonda Berning, a fifth-generation Carson City native, attended a job fair at the city’s Community Center Friday and found herself in a smaller but better prepared group of job seekers than attended previous fairs.
Well dressed and well prepared herself, the 47-year-old educator was at her first such event seeking opportunities, and she was targeted in her approach
Berning decided to stop by just a few of the more than 40 tables set up by prospective employers, among them those of Rite of Passage school and Ron Wood Family Resource Center.
“I was a school teacher,” she said, sharing that she taught sixth grade but took a different job in Reno that didn’t work out. She said she also has a background that includes work in veterinary medicine and isn’t confining herself to looking only in one field.
“I’m open to options. I do have a lot of applications in already” with prospects for teaching or in other areas.
Berning spent some time talking at the Rite of Passage table with Esmerelda Bejar, a student and athlete at the charter school in Minden. Bejar, a 10th grader, and Audrianna Contreras, a recent Rite of Passage graduate, were answering questions at the table when Berning approached.
At a nearby table, job fair organizer Lynn Ellis of city Health and Human Services noted fewer people had lined up this time to enter the event that HHS and two other sponsors put on in the community center gymnasium.
Two previous community job fairs this year had attracted more than 700 each time, resulting in at least 102 people securing positions subsequently.
Job fairs are a little like speed dating, basically an opportunity to make contacts and follow up later for a full-blown interview process if both parties show interest.
The event was hosted by HHS, the Chamber of Commerce and Job Opportunities In Nevada.
The HHS work force program case manager said she was pleased to note, however, that many came with proper background information in hand.
“I think they came more prepared today,” she said, adding a show of hands at the door before the event determined nine out 10 had resumes.
Ronni Hannaman, chamber executive director, expressed pleasure with the appearance of many at Friday’s gathering.
“This group is better dressed,” she said. “They look like they’re looking for jobs.”