The Job Seekers

April 02, 2009

Thousands flocked to the 5th Regiment Armory in Baltimore for a job fair Monday that featured government and private employers but few real job offers. Here are a few participants' views:

Emory Proctor, 24, a graduate of Hampton University with a degree in business administration, has a job but is open to a new opportunity: "It's easier to find a job when you have a job. ... Right now, [in] my current position, I do pretty well. As I said, I'm with the financial services division, so, I mean, the people that are trying to invest, I do OK, but it's so rocky and up and down that you never know."

Jerome King, 56, a military veteran, worked for 37 years as an information technology manager until he was laid off two weeks ago from his six-figure-salary job at a construction management company: "No warning. No severance. Just, 'Hey, I hate to see you go.' Well, I'm really just getting back out there. I haven't even had to write a resume for, I know for, going on 20 years. I've been really blessed. I've been able to go from one job to the next job. ... Unemployment insurance is peanuts comparatively so."

Louisa Kellner, 24, is a Towson University graduate who had a baby in January: "I'd like to get in with the government because I'm looking to get a job, keep the job and hopefully retire from the job, and I know the government has great benefits and pensions. ... My mother-in-law works at Social Security in Woodlawn, and I knew that they have day care there on site."

To watch video of interviews from the job fair, go to

baltimoresun.com/opinion

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