United Senior Services to host a job fair to provide opportunities for aging population

United Senior Services (USS) of Springfield in partnership with Springfield Community Navigators (SCN) will host an unconventional job fair on July 12 aimed at – but not limited to -providing opportunities for adults of retirement age.

“We recognize that many people who are older are interested in continuing work for a variety of reasons. Perhaps they need to supplement their income, sometimes they have a large expenditure on the horizon. Often, they want to contribute in a meaningful, purposeful way while learning new skills,” says Maureen Fagans, executive director of USS. “Whatever the reason, the older workforce has much to offer employers. USS appreciates the opportunity to connect employers with mature, loyal, hardworking future employees.”

USS and SCN are committed to providing resources and support to Clark County’s older adult population during a transitional time in their lives.

In addition to employment opportunities for the older workforce, the job fair will also feature several warehouse and manufacturing employers, which may have openings available that appeal to a younger workforce. The event is free and open to everyone of all ages.

“There will be a range of opportunities depending on what your life demands are at this point and what your skill set is,” says Keith Baldwin, Springfield Community Navigator at USS. “There will be something there for the younger crowd and something for the older crowd.”

More than 20 employers will be in attendance at the job fair, including Sweet Manufacturing Company.

“Sweet Manufacturing Company has been a local manufacturer and employer for over 67 years,” says Alicia Sweet Hupp, president and CEO of Sweet Manufacturing. “In my 41 years at Sweet, I have never seen the lack of skilled labor workforce currently within the fabrication, welding, and assembly areas.  It has also been a challenge to fill general labor positions like shipping and material handling.”

Hupp says Sweet Manufacturing is looking at non-traditional resources for posting job openings such as churches, non-profit social providers, local specialty markets. 

“The USS job fair is a great opportunity for local business to tap into a great resource for potential unutilized and experienced skilled labor,” she says. “Most employers can offer flexible work schedules to accommodate those who are already retired.”

Hupp says Clark State College has been a huge workforce supporter and has collaborated with multiple local manufacturers to provide the skill set training needed to sustain local business.

“We need the local school systems to educate and communicate to the middle school and high school population the opportunities available in the manufacturing sector, then teach them basic skills needed for these technical trade careers,” she says. “These workforce issues which are critical to business sustainability are not just a local problem, this is a nationwide problem, and the entire country needs help provide solutions, not be a part of the problem.”

Clark State, Cedarville University, Ohio Means Jobs and Dayton Easter Seals will also attend the event to present job training programs and opportunities.

Baldwin says several jobseekers have reached out to ask more about the job fair.  He says the job fair is an opportunity for them to meet with employers and ask questions to determine if a job position meets their needs and lifestyle.

“We also wanted to educate employers that maybe they can take a full-time job and create a job-sharing opportunity,” says Baldwin. “They might not want a full time anymore, but they would like the extra income. If a company can take a full-time job and split it into part-time jobs between a few candidates, it can be beneficial not only to the employer but gives that workforce generation some opportunities.”

The USS Job Fair will be held from noon to 4 p.m., Wednesday, July 12 at USS, 125 West Main Street, Springfield.

“It’s open to everybody,” says Baldwin. “We are just hoping to put the people who are looking for jobs and the people needing to hire for jobs in the same room and hopefully make a good marriage.”
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Read more articles by Darci Jordan.

Lifelong Clark County resident Darci Jordan is a freelance writer and former staff writer/columnist for the Springfield News-Sun. She is a graduate of The Ohio State University with a bachelor of science degree in Agriculture Communications. She currently also serves as a writer for the Clark State Community College marketing department. She enjoys time with her family, horses and Ohio State football. Go Bucks!