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August 21, 2019

Last Week's Opportunity ATL Job & Resource Fair

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Last week, the City of East Point, Georgia saw an influx of job seekers from across the Metro Atlanta region who attended the 2nd annual Opportunity ATL Job & Resource Fair, which connects Atlanta job seekers with training and services to help obtain and retain employment, organized by Amy Lancaster-King, Director of Workforce Development at the Metro Atlanta Chamber, and her team.

 

4.6 million Americans between the ages of 16 and 24 are out of school and also not working. These young, motivated workers, or Opportunity Youth, are a vital and untapped workforce looking to fill millions of open positions. However, many of these Opportunity Youth are unaware that opportunities are available, nor are they aware of the steps they need to take to secure jobs. At the same time, employers often lack strategies to effectively recruit, train, and retain young workers who face systemic barriers on their path to employment.

With its goals of impacting the job readiness, hiring, and retention of Opportunity Youth in the region, and developing direct linkages between job ready young people seeking entry-level employment with companies looking for young talent, Opportunity ATL works to develop Metro Atlanta’s capacity as an employment hub, consequently contributing to the region’s economic growth. This fair, sponsored by 100,000 Job Opportunities Initiative, United Way of Greater Atlanta, Goodwill of North Georgia, and WorkSource Georgia, hosted 35 local and national employers looking to fill over 1,600 positions.

 

Additionally, the Opportunity ATL Job & Resource Fair featured Resume Review and Interview Coaching, free professional blazers and job services from Find Your Fit at Goodwill, 5 Mobile Career Labs provided by WorkSource Georgia for on-the-spot applications, and Restorative Justice Expungement Program. The expungement program was a collaborative effort by Fulton, Clayton, Douglas and DeKalb County Solicitors-General, and the Georgia Justice Project, and provided attendees the opportunity to have their misdemeanor criminal records restricted, a critical barrier to employment for many.

The event was a great success for both employers and jobseekers with 981 attendees, over 750 on-the-spot interviews and ­­­150 on-site job offers, and one employer hiring over 80 people from the fair. Results will continue to grow as employers intend to follow up with over 1,500 candidates and have already scheduled over 250 follow-up interviews.

Opportunity ATL will continue to help local Opportunity Youth connect to employment, training and services and engaging employers, community-based organizations, the public sector, and to best leverage this untapped talent source.

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