Ryan Falk/Atchison Globe

Students sign in at a career fair hosted by HCC and Kansasworks. The event was open to the entire community and was meant to help visitors find their first job or become reemployed.

Highland Community College hosted a career fair in collaboration with Kansasworks and numerous businesses on Thursday. The event gave local residents as well as students a chance to learn about career opportunities near them, including welding, healthcare, pawnshops and schools.

According to Northeast Kansas Regional Operations Manager Pamela Hann, over 105 people had visited before noon, with more coming in.

One such visitor was Berkley Lutu, who is hoping to major in P.E. with a concentration in coaching. Lutu said his dream job was to play for the NFL. To get started on that road, he has decided to take up coaching, whether it is college, high school or professional, as it “is the closest thing to be a part of his passion.”

HCC student Lane Sinclair came to look for something that was physical and hands-on. One application he was looking into was with Summit Truck Bodies, but his big goal is to be a firefighter.

Another HCC student, Dalton Armstrong, came to the event just to look around. He said he would be starting work with John Deere in Waterloo, Iowa, in May and later in Milford, Nebraska. While working with John Deere, Armstrong said he would be employed as a certified technician.

The city of Atchison was among the businesses at the career fair, looking for applicants for a parks maintenance worker to perform landscaping and “shaping a healthier, safer community.”

Ring, a company that manufactures plastic objects, was also in attendance. A representative said the job was always interesting because on some days, the equipment worked fine, and on others, you had to give it a good kick-start sometimes.

Even though the event marked the first time HCC and Kansasworks have collaborated on such an occasion, the two entities have worked together beyond the career fair. Workforce Services Specialist Shauna Downing has an office on the HCC campus in Building A.

Furthermore, Workforce Services Supervisor Cheryl White said clients looking for jobs can call into the Lawrence office with questions, and that any and all services provided are free of cost.

Ryan Falk can be reached at ryan.falk@npgco.com.

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