Despite a weak economy, 26 employers participated in the 4th Annual Youth Job Fair at Santa Monica High School.
About 330 Santa Monica residents and/or Samohi students, ranging in age from 14-24, had the opportunity to meet with employers and apply for both seasonal summer jobs and permanent positions.
Santa Monica Chamber of Commerce President/CEO Laurel Rosen told the Mirror even when the economy is slow employers are looking for “great, viable employees.” She then mentioned that the fair was a “great opportunity for the youth to be able in one stop to meet with many business owners” and learn what certain jobs entail and discuss their future. “This one moment could be a step in history” for a young person.
This year, the fair highlighted a new program called “Career Internship” that was created through a partnership between the Santa Monica Chamber of Commerce and the Westside Regional Occupation Program at Samohi. This program gives certain high school students in 10th and 11th grades the opportunity to participate in summer internships in fashion, healthcare, entertainment, computer technology, and other fields. In addition to on-the-job exposure, the interns will also attend a class that will include project assignments based on their internship experiences. The class will culminate with an end-of-program presentation for parents, industry internship mentors, and representatives from the Chamber of Commerce. Students who participate could benefit from the experience when choosing their college major, by building a personal portfolio for college and scholarship applications, and making a career choice.
Another participant in the fair was the Employment Development Department (EDD), which had representatives from their Youth Employment Opportunity Program on hand. The purpose of their program is to “provide services to youth ages 15 to 21, to assist them in achieving their educational and vocational goals.” The program emphasizes education, assessment, and peer advising.The City of Santa Monica, the Santa Monica Chamber of Commerce, the Jewish Vocational Services of West Hollywood, and EDD, along with assistance from the Westside Regional Occupational Program and Samohi, organized the April 23 job fair. Most of the fair’s costs were paid for by the City of Santa Monica, however the table costs were paid for by the Loews and Le Merigot Hotels.
Those unable to attend the fair can still receive help finding employment by contacting Moira McCormack at 310.458.8688, Monday through Friday, from 9 a.m.-7p.m., or at firstname.lastname@example.org.