Hundreds of military veterans from across the Triangle region and beyond packed a special job fair Thursday in Raleigh.
This job fair at Carter-Finley Stadium was for veterans like Jimmy Hicks of Cameron, near Ft. Bragg.
“Usually I get at least one or two calls back when I attend a job fair," said Hicks. “Hey, if you get one, I think that’s a good thing."
Hicks retired from the Army in 2000. He's looking for a career in telecommunications. His job with Verizon was outsourced some years ago.
Military spouses like Xia Trobough of Sanford passed out her resume. Her husband of three years is in Germany.
“We are unseen soldiers, every time our husbands serve we are serving too. We are serving at home," said Trobough.
Hicks and Trobough waited in the long line to speak with a recruiter from Lockeed Martin. Boeing was also there, and so was Merck, Lowes, State Farm, Amtrak and several schools.
“Recruit Military” organizes about 65 job fairs annually across the country, targeting a group that has had a tough time finding new careers during the economic downturn.
Steven Balczo is Director of Military Outreach for "Recruit Military." More than 800 veterans signed up for this week's event. Balczo says companies did not come out to just "salute the troops." They want to hire talented people.
"The veterans are flexible, they are from a very fluid battle space overseas, so they know how to shift on the fly," said Balczo. "Corporate can say, we are no longer making A, we are now making Z and a veteran can change with them."
Tim Holloway recruits for Durham-based Tapco Crane and Rigging. He liked what he saw at the job fair.
"They may not be trained in our particular field, but they are trainable. And one good thing we look at, they can all pass background checks and everything else." said Holloway. "They have had a good life with the service and have served us, so it's time for us to help them"
The next "Recruit Military" job fair in North Carolina is on June 5th in Charlotte.