Career fair one way Vail Valley college can help job-seekers |

Career fair one way Vail Valley college can help job-seekers

Scott N. Miller
Vail, CO, Colorado

EDWARDS ” Colorado Mountain College is trying to help people who are looking for work, or just looking for a new direction.

The college Tuesday hosted a career fair, an event with information about various college programs, as well as presentations from the Eagle County School District and Colorado State University’s Global Campus program, which allows students an on-line way to either finish a bachelor’s degree or earn a master’s degree.

“We just launched this in September, so the timing, for us, was great,” said program representative Chelsea Fisher. “We’ve had a lot of interest.”

Local resident Mark Bucholz had a few packets of material from the CSU table Tuesday. Currently a manager at a local manufacturing company, Bucholz said he’s looking at on-line learning programs to sharpen his own skills.

Peggy Curry, dean of the Colorado Mountain College Edwards campus, said the table set up by the Eagle County School District had quite a bit of interest from the small, but curious crowd Tuesday.

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Curry said the college and directors and board members of the local chambers of commerce have been talking recently about how to help people hit by the economic slowdown.

Tuesday’s career fair was one offshoot of those conversations.

Not a lot of people turned out, but those who did were curious to see what was available.

Nora Fryklund has been looking for work since she lost her job as Eagle County’s human resources manager late last year.

“I want to hear about new opportunities,” Fryklund said. “I want to know if I’m missing out on anything, and maybe network with some new people.”

Besides the fair, another upshot of the college/chamber conversations is a new “career exploration” class taught by college counselors Larry Dutmer and Mary Ann Looby. The class starts in early February.

Dutmer said the college has long offered career counseling, but only recently decided to create a class out of that advice.

“Our first session will ask people ‘What’s your situation?'” Dutmer said. People with immediate needs will focus on resume writing, interview skills and similar topics.

People who can take a little broader view can start talking about what their passions are and how those could be transformed into a career path.

“It can be a little tough to figure that out by yourself,” Dutmer said. “We want to dig down to ask what is it that makes you happy, what motivates you.”

Curry said the career exploration may be the start of more programs aimed at helping people find either new jobs or new careers.

“We’re trying to be nimble, to provide what people need right now,” Curry said.

Business Editor Scott N. Miller can be reached at 748-2930, or

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