Michael D. Bates

Staff writer

CareerSource Citrus Levy Marion (CSCLM) is set to host its fourth annual Youth Job Fair on Wednesday at the College of Central Florida’s Webber Conference Center in Ocala.

The free event is exclusively for 16- to 24-year-olds who are seeking full- or part-time employment for permanent, summer or temporary positions. Held in partnership with Eckerd Workforce Development, it takes place from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The Webber Center is located on the north side of campus and is easily accessed via Southwest 20th Street.

Laura Byrnes, CSCLM communications manager, said this annual event has averaged 274 job seekers each year and has been growing steadily since it began in 2014 with five employers. This year, there will be nine employers represented. 

“Last year’s event was so large that we decided to move it to a larger facility, which is also more centrally located (and) closer to Citrus County,” Byrnes said. “Employers have been very enthusiastic.”

To date, the following employers with jobs to fill plan to attend: Cardinal LG, Cheney Brothers, Chick-fil-A Ocala, Fairbanks Construction, FedEx Ground, Florida Department of Corrections, Marion County Board of County Commissioners, McDonald’s, Plato’s Closet, Sitel and Taco Bell.

Attendees are urged to bring copies of their resume and come dressed to impress — no flip-flops or casual sandals, t-shirts with profane or obscene language or images, no shorts or jeans with rips or holes, or anything too tight, short or revealing. 

“For the most part, the teens and young adults are dressed nicely and are very invested in the experience,” Byrnes said. “We adhere to a dress code because we want to ensure they put their best foot forward and take the event seriously. And most do. Last year, only six individuals were invited to return after changing from shorts to appropriate attire, and half of them did.” 

Brenda Chrisman, CSCLM career center and business services officer, calls the job fair “an extraordinary opportunity for older youth and young adults.”

“Last year’s event drew 350 young people and we expect the same kind of turnout this year,” Chrisman said.

Chrisman noted that anyone interested in developing or updating their resume, working on interview skills and other job fair preparation may visit CareerSource CLM’s career centers in Citrus, Levy and Marion counties. The services are available at no charge.

For more information about the Youth Job Fair, call 352-873-7955 or 800-746-9950, or for information about CareerSource CLM services, call 800-434-JOBS or visit careersourceclm.com.

Contact Chronicle reporter Michael D. Bates at 352-563-3205 or mbates@chronicleonline.com.

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