Success Fair targets veterans, other job seekers

Military service veterans and others in need of a job are invited to an upcoming career fair that will connect them to area employers.

The fifth annual Quad-Cities Success Fair will be 1-4 p.m. Dec. 14 at the Rogalski Center ballroom at St. Ambrose University in Davenport.

The job fair is open to the entire community, but veterans and their spouses are especially encouraged to attend. The fair is sponsored by the IowaWORKS Davenport Job Center. The Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES) is a partner in the event.

James Stout

James Stout, veterans career planner at IowaWORKS, said the event is expected to attract more than 50 employers and provide more than 70 booths. He’s also hopeful for a huge turnout of job hunters. 

If the Success Fair draws 100 or more job seekers, Mr. Stout said  “employers would be very happy” considering the Quad Cities’ labor shortage.

The IowaWORKS representative also is pleased the agency’s job fair is returning to an in-person gathering after COVID-19 forced it to become a drive-through event last year. 

Mr. Stout said the Success Fair continues to grow over the years. When it began, the fair was held in a relatively small space at the Iowa National Guard building in Davenport. The IowaWorks event has flourished under a partnership with the Rock Island Arsenal, IDES and St. Ambrose.

This year’s job fair is expected to attract employers from many fields including retail, government, health care, manufacturing and more. Among the employers expected to attend are: Rock Island Arsenal, area police departments, Hy-Vee, Kraft Heinz, MidAmerican Energy Co., Whirlpool and many others. 

Jacqueline Friemel

“If you are looking for security or police jobs, (the Success Fair) is the place to be,” said Jacqueline Friemel, local employment veterans representative with IowaWORKS. She added that representatives from the states of Iowa and Illinois are expected to attend — with job openings available for prison correctional officers.

Ms. Friemel said even though the upcoming job fair is open to all, she hopes that many veterans will attend. A big part of her job is to help prepare vets who are transitioning from the military to civilian sector jobs. Often that job centers around updating their resumes so civilian employers can better understand a veteran’s accomplishments, experiences and skills.

“Self promotion may not be a skill some (veterans) are used to, but it’s really all about self promotion in the civilian sector,” she said. “A veteran is very task-orientated and we need to show employers that.”

The Success Fair was developed at the IowaWORKS Davenport center about five years ago. It is described as an “end-of-the-year celebration” to help vets and others who need jobs.

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