St. Ann’s job’s fair attracts more than 800 attendees

July 2, 2015


By Steve Waring
Special to the Milwaukee Times

If any further evidence were necessary about the economic problems on the north side of Milwaukee, a job fair for a new employer held on June 26 provided emphatic visual proof. More than 800 job seekers arrived within the first hour-and-ahalf of the advertised start. Another 536 resumes were emailed before the event even began.

Monique Taylor, director of human resources for the St. Ann’s Intergenerational Family Center and the job fair organizer, arrived about an hour before the 10 a.m. start and she could not believe there were already 75 applicants waiting in the lobby of the Milwaukee Area Workforce building, 2338 N. 27th St.

“From there the numbers just grew,” Ms. Taylor said. “Buses came and just about everyone must have gotten off, because the numbers grew very rapidly.”

grew very rapidly.” By 11 a.m., the line stretched nearly the entire two blocks of the workforce building parking lot. Ricardo Ybarra, manager of the Milwaukee Area Workforce surveyed the line in the buliding parking lot and said he was not surprised by the large turnout.

“Our job is to connect employers with job seekers,” he said. “This is a line of opportunity, a door to a better future for these people and their families.”

Staff from the St. Ann Center had planned for a maximum of 400 applicants throughout the day. Despite initially underestimating the number of applicants, St. Ann’s staff rose to the challenge. The process moved efficiently and most applicants did not have to wait long before being interviewed.

“Even if they did not have a lot of skills, or in some cases a resume prepared, people showed up,” Ms. Taylor said. “There were also many qualified professional people who are desperate to help their families. I wish we could hire all 800. There is definitely a major need for jobs on the North Side. If there were jobs available people would come and apply.”

St. Ann’s Intergenerational Family Center is in the process of constructing a new campus at 2450 W. North Ave. It is scheduled to open on Sept. 1 and the facility will be a larger version of a similar one that has already been operating on Milwaukee’s Bayview area, since 1999. Previously Sister Edna Lonergan, president, had said St. Ann’s would be hiring 200 mostly full-time jobs when the new North Side campus is fully operational.

St. Ann’s is a not-for-profit organization offering multigenerational educational opportunities, as well as after school programs and child care. It is also one of the first in the country to offer dementia-specific and comprehensive communitybased health care fully integrated for all ages under one roof, according to a press release on the St. Ann’s