SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — Many Central New York businesses are in critical need of workers. At the same time, some people are still struggling to find the right job for them.
To help, Onondaga Community College hosted a job fair on Monday afternoon at the SRC Arena.
The turnout was slow and steady, but both the businesses and those looking for a job are in agreement that it’s a win-win being able to connect in-person.
We don’t just want to get through a rough patch here, which it’s going to be a rough patch through September. We want to build a pipeline for the future.Andy Boucounis, President of Andy’s Produce and Food Service
For the last 4 years, Daquon Franklin of Homer, has been working part time as a maintenance man at St. Margaret’s Catholic Church in Mattydale.
“I am so fortunate to work there because it helped me during the pandemic, where I didn’t have to get unemployment. I was worried about that,” Franklin explained.
But only working part time isn’t enough for him to support his family, which is why he showed up to the job fair at OCC.
“The job fair is everything,” — Daquan Franklin
Trying to find a job out here, initially, is kind of difficult. When you have opportunities like this, you have to take advantage of it. It’s so many different positions, so many different businesses looking for positions, especially after COVID.Daquon Franklin, Job Fair Attendee
The job search hasn’t been easy for Catherine Farrington either. She had to stop working years ago in order to take care of her aging parents, but now she’s ready to get back to work.
“I’ve had a big gap. So, it’s a struggle trying to find something and not being able to meet someone upfront,” Farrington said.
Attendees like Farrington and Franklin were face-to-face with business owners in several industries like the restaurant, service, hotel, government, education and manufacturing fields.
Boucounis, the owner of Andy’s Produce, says filling positions and finding the right job is more difficult than some people think, especially after the pandemic.
“People had different reasons. Some people think it’s just because everybody doesn’t want to get off the couch and go to work, but there’s a lot of different reasons from what I’ve heard from people,” Boucounis said.
This job fair is getting people, business and families back on their feet.
“I’m just looking to get with a winning team, that’s it,” — Daquan Franklin
Many of the businesses offered sign-on bonuses and raffles. Wegmans was also there hosting a vaccine clinic for attendees.
If you couldn’t make it out to the job fair, here’s a list of the employers and the jobs they’re hoping to fill: