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Hall's unemployment rises; leaders plan events to help jobless workers
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What: “How to Succeed at a Job Fair”
When: 9-11 a.m. today
Where: Lanier Career Academy
Why: To help residents prepare for job fair on March 28
How much: Free to public

When it comes to job searching in today's economy, everyone could use a little help.

The Georgia Department of Labor recently released a preliminary report of metro Gainesville's jobless rate, noting an increase from the previous numbers.

According to the GDOL, the area's jobless rate rose from 7.5 percent in December of last year to 7.6 percent in January.

The rate, however, is down 1.4 percent from a year ago.

That is where area economic leaders step in.

The Greater Hall Chamber of Commerce and the Gainesville Area Employer Committee, with assistance from the GDOL, will provide Hall residents an opportunity to tap into the local job market.

Today, from 9-11 a.m., the employer committee and GDOL will conduct at seminar on "How to Succeed at a Job Fair" at Lanier Career Academy.

The seminar will precede the chamber's job fair on March 28 at the Georgia Mountains Center.

"You get quite a mixture of people that attend a job fair, so we want to try and give them every opportunity to be as prepared as they want to be," said Kit Dunlap, chamber president.

Seminar participants can have their resumes critiqued for free and sit in on workshops for resume writing, filling out applications, applying for jobs online and making a good first impression.

The seminar is intended to prepare those who plan to attend the job fair.

At the last job fair, those classes were held in conjunction with the expo, and participants did not have the opportunity to experience both.

"(The chamber, Employer Committee and GDOL) decided to offer this service a couple of weeks before the job fair," Dunlap said.

The workshops are free to the public.

The seminar and fair present those without a job, or those searching for another position, a good opening for making contact with area employers.

"You never know where that opportunity is," said Dunlap.

"I think it's important to use every opportunity you get."

Attendees at the expo will rub elbows with representatives from area companies, educational institutions and resource agencies.

Currently, the chamber has 46 companies registered for the expo.

Some employers will even be hiring.

"(Attendees) are going to be exposed to some of the best companies in Hall County," said Dunlap. "These are great employers that are actually hiring."

More than 2,000 people attended the previous job fair, and Dunlap estimates the same this year.

The expo will be held March 28 from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m.
Registration for employers ends March 21.

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