Thousands Attend Bay County Job Fair

By: Erica Rakow Email
By: Erica Rakow Email

The U.S. unemployment rate dropped two-tenths of a percent last month to 8.3 percent, the lowest in three years. But there are still a lot of people looking for jobs, or better jobs.

More than 2,300 people showed up at Haney Technical Center Friday for the 25th annual Bay County job fair. They were hoping to land a job with more than 60 companies hoping to fill openings.

One thing's for sure, unemployment does not discriminate. The crowd of job-seekers included recent high school graduates and college graduates, as well as adults with years of experience.

"I just graduated with an advertising degree in May from Pensacola and I’ve not been able to find a job anywhere. I've applied all over the country and there's just nothing," said recent college graduate, Brittany Hatzer.

"I really thought I would have no trouble finding a job. I thought, I have a degree, you know, I taught for 25 years, I have a good resume and it's been hard," said Linda Rambes who moved to Bay County a year and a half ago.

No matter the age or years of experience, some say it's been a frustrating process. But most say Friday’s job fair gave them renewed optimism.

"It feels a little hopeless sometimes and then I come here and it feels like maybe there's a chance I will find something," said Hatzer.

The job fair's first hour was open only to veterans and 130 showed up. Organizers say it's one of the largest and most successful job fairs they've held. Several companies hired people on the spot.


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