A sign of the changing economic times in the Flathead

Apr 9, 2014

The Flathead Valley Community College and Flathead Job Service host a Job Fair 4/16 featuring 70 employers.
Credit Katrin Frye

A sold out job fair is a sign of the changing economic times in the Flathead. For the past three years Flathead Valley Community College and the local Job Service have sponsored a spring Job Fair. They had stopped offering it for a few years prior to 2012 because of the lack of job openings.

Manager of the Flathead Job Service Bill Nelson said in the depths of the recession they were listing about 40-job openings.

Over the last few days its closer to 5-hundred.

Student Advisor and Navigator Jori Bullemer with FVCC also used to work at the Job Service.

Bullemer said this year they have seventy businesses signed up, and only a handful of them are Baaken-oil-field related companies.

“There’s seasonal work, there is full time permanent work, there is everything from non-profit to service industry to the energy sector, to the local firearms industries. I really think there’s a little something for everybody,” Bullemer said.

Leading up to the fair are a number of classes both at FVCC and the Job Service on things like how to handle the interview, and building or tuning up your resume. Bullemer said resumes have changed a lot in the last decade.

“It really needs to be almost like a marketing document anymore, and if you can’t catch the employers eye right near the top of your resume, and pique their interest, they’re never going to see what’s on the bottom,” Bullemer said.

Nelson said the unadjusted unemployment rate for the Flathead for February sits at 8.3%. Compare that to February of 2010 when it hit a high of 13.3%.

The fair is on April 16th at the Community College Arts and Technology building from 12:30 to 4, opening at 12 to veterans and their families.