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Job fair held for those 55 and older



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Although Wall Street rebounded a little today, the future still feels uncertain for many Utah workers, especially those nearing retirement. At a job fair in Davis County today, though, those nearing retirement were the only ones who got through the door.

There's a good chance Bob Preece never thought he would be handing out doughnut to strangers, but for him, he does it to make himself memorable when employers go over résumés.

"It's hard to find a job. You apply and apply and apply. And no one seemed to be interested. So my resume now doesn't have my age on it," Preece said.

Like so many others looking for work, Preece is in the 55 years and older age category. After working his whole life, it's a category that isn't the easiest to be in while looking for a job. That's why Davis County created this job fair; it's only for those in that age bracket.

Ron Burris, with the Davis County Health Department, said, "It gives us a chance to talk to employers about the benefits of hiring what we call an older worker."

Burris, who helps find jobs for older workers, admits it is tough but says there are jobs out there. "To face an employer for the first time in 20 some years, that's a scary situation," he said.

A lot of the older workers we spoke with say one of their biggest fears is having to work with a computer, new technology. But employers we spoke with say they are willing to train. Karen Guy, with Focus Services, said, "I've had to learn. And let me tell you, if I can learn a computer, anybody can learn."

Guy works for a telemarketing company and was at the job fair trying to find others for jobs at her company. "It might be a little nervous to begin with, but once you get into it, it's great," she said.

It's just getting into it that's the tough part. "I am more reliable now than I was when I was younger. I am more committed to what I do," Preece said.

Some of the jobs available at the job fair include cashier work, bus drivers, customer service representatives and marketing positions. More than 30 businesses were looking for workers.

E-mail: acabrero@ksl.com

Alex Cabrero

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