Eagle County Schools career fair coming soon | VailDaily.com

Eagle County Schools career fair coming soon

The Eagle County Schools Career and Job Fair is a cooperative effort by Eagle County Schools, Eagle County Rotary Clubs and the Vail Valley Partnership. This event is designed to advance our common interest of keeping Eagle County a great place to live, learn, work and do business. This event is aimed at our high school students in the Vail Valley.

Of note, much of this has been previously distributed to the local business community. Seldom do we get a chance to work with various stakeholder groups to provide a win-win-win situation. This is one of those times.

A win for businesses in Eagle County:

Promote your company

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Identify and hire future employees

Provide work-study or internships or summer jobs

Explain and share with students the future of your industry

Give back to the community and support the future vitality of the valley

A win for students of Eagle County students:

Find a job

Discover more about an industry

Explore a potential career path of interest and learn how to get into that career

Interview practice

Develop contacts and build a professional network

Opportunity for work-study or internships or summer jobs

A win for Eagle County Schools:

Provide an opportunity for students to explore careers

Meet one of the state’s requirements for career exploration

Education and the business community interacting to ensure schools are providing work-ready students

Here in Eagle County, we often talk about “quality of life,” and rightfully so. Gainful and meaningful employment is a core component of quality of life, and exposing our high school students to the jobs that exist in our economy is an important component of ensuring our quality of life remains strong. This is important because despite the 2008 recession, our population remained stable in Eagle County. The 2011 Colorado State Demographer’s office still projected 19 percent growth between 2010 and 2015 and nearly 37 percent growth between 2010 and 2020, resulting in a county-wide population of about 71,000 individuals within the next six years.

The projected continuous growth of the county population is already being mirrored by the year-to-year growth in the Eagle County Schools’ pre-K through 12 student population, which did not see negative growth during even the most economically challenging period. The fall 2007 student October count for the district was at 5,724 students and has grown by 12 percent to 6,408 students in fall of 2012.

The fact is, numerous groups around the state are focused on providing workforce development tools and resources to the business community. These include the Colorado Workforce Center and the Colorado Rural Workforce Consortium at a state level and the Northwest Colorado Council of Governments at a regional level. These groups provide much needed services to veterans and on-the-job training opportunities for our business community.

Local Level

However, we owe it to ourselves to get involved at a local level to make a difference for our students and to play an active role in developing our future workforce. Participating in the School Career Fair is a small way for businesses to give back to the community and be a part of the solution to helping our schools develop students who are ready for the “real world.”

It’s important for local businesses from all sectors (entrepreneurs, health and wellness, creative services, professional services, vocational jobs, construction, hospitality, etc.) to participate to give students a wide-ranging perspective on opportunities.

What does “participate” mean to a business in the Eagle County Schools Career Fair? It means having a booth at the fair, meeting with students to review your organization and industry, providing internships and/or summer jobs, and maybe most importantly helping our students with a knowledge path of how to move forward should they want to know more about your industry.

Employment instills a whole array of positive traits in our students, including independence, responsibility, interpersonal skills and a good work ethic. A well trained emerging workforce (be it in existing industries or new emerging industries) has obvious benefits to our employers and also to our students as high school employment often leads to increased school engagement and higher graduation rates (source: Northwest Colorado Council of Governments).

Vail Valley Partnership is proud to be an active participant in the Eagle County Schools Career Fair, and we encourage the local business community to participate as well.

The event will take place Tuesday, March 18, and is open to students from 8:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. at Battle Mountain High School. Businesses interested in participating should contact Jill Lammers, Vail Valley Partnership vice president, at 970-477-4000 or via email at jlammers@visitvailvalley.com.

Chris Romer is the president and CEO of the Vail Valley Partnership.

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