Business, career expo to feature area businesses

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Several area businesses, organizations and schools will participate in the 2008 Business and Career Expo, which will be held in the Crowder College Cassville Center auditorium on Business 37, on Oct. 1. The event will be hosted by the Cassville Area Chamber of Commerce and Crowder College.

"The business and career expo will allow students to see what careers are available locally and gain an understanding of the education required to be eligible for those careers," said Angela Seymour, Crowder College Cassville Center director. "We hope to connect students with people from these different careers."

Representatives of local businesses and organizations will also share information on experience requirements with students, said Seymour.

"Students will be able to match this information to courses to obtain the appropriate degree for their career," said Seymour. "They will also learn about specific positions in area businesses and what is required to reach those positions."

Crowder College students who are nearing graduation will also have an opportunity to develop a relationship and network with local companies, said Seymour.

"We are not looking to hire right now, but we are hoping some high school junior or senior or college student might be interested in our business," said Bill Shiveley, Barry Electric Cooperative general manager and chief executive officer. "We want to show them what jobs are available here and the skills needed to be a part of the cooperative."

"They will be able to learn about our needs. We have jobs in different areas that use computers and nearly every area uses math skills," said Shiveley. "We have positions in accounting, engineering, as linemen and other jobs available."

Representatives of Oxford Healthcare, which offers positions in Barry and surrounding counties, plan to share information on salary and benefits with potential employees. The company will also share information on job responsibilities, schedules and education requirements.

Students will also have an opportunity to learn about medical careers by talking with St. John's Hospital representatives.

"At St. John's Hospital-Cassville, we are committed to making a difference in the community we serve," said Nicki Gamet, who serves as chief nursing officer at St. John's Hospitals in Cassville and Aurora. "Participating in the business and career expo gives us a chance to invite students and area residents to ask questions and explore what it means to be a part of St. John's.

"We want to share our vision, mission and values with those attending and make a personal connection with them," said Gamet. "We feel that once they learn more, they'll want to join the St. John's team."

Individuals attending the career and business expo will also have an opportunity to learn about radio and broadcasting careers from representatives of Zimmer Radio, which is based in Joplin.

"We like having the opportunity to get out and talk about radio and the different types of positions available in radio," said Chad Elliot, Zimmer Radio operations manager. "Most students know about our on-air positions but we also have a sales department, and we need sharp individuals to get out in the community to talk with advertisers.

"We also like to talk about broadcasting in general, including television broadcasting, to broaden students' horizons," said Elliot. "We will tell them a little bit about education requirements for sales and engineering positions. You don't necessarily need an education for an on-air position, but we will stress the importance of having a good background."

"The expo will help ensure students that they are on the right path by visiting with employers in their field who have the knowledge and expertise needed to answer their questions," said Jolene Howerton, Crowder College Career Services coordinator. "Businesses participating in the event will have an opportunity to get their names out there and talk to prospective employees.

"Especially in smaller businesses, there is a need for a good personality fit," said Howerton. "Through this event they can look at the individual and find someone who they connect to."

The 2008 Business and Career Expo will be held from 10:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. on Oct. 1. The event is free and open to the public.

"The event is not just for students," said Seymour. "It is for anyone seeking information about local companies or careers. Individuals can also make connections with people from Crowder College and local universities."

Businesses, organizations and schools currently registered for the 2008 Business and Career Expo include: MOZARKS Directory; St. John's Hospital-Cassville and Aurora; Barry Electric Cooperative; U.S. Army; Arning Canopy; St. John's Home Care; the University of Arkansas; Missouri Southern State University; Crowder College Transport Training; Crossland Construction; Community Bank and Trust, of Neosho; Rose and McCrary PC, of Grove, Okla.; Oxford Healthcare; Missouri Division of Youth Services; Zimmer Radio; John Brown University; Pittsburg State University; and Commerce Bank of Barry County.

Businesses and organizations interested in participating in the business and career expo can obtain a registration form at the Cassville Chamber of Commerce office, which is located at 504 Main St. in Cassville.

The registration fee for the event is $40. The fee includes the use of a 70-square-foot booth space with a table and chairs, a complimentary lunch and free beverages.

The registration deadline for the business and career expo event is Friday, Sept. 26.

"Businesses that need electricity need to let us know up front," said Howerton. "They should also let us know about any special needs they might have."

For more information on the 2008 Business and Career Expo, call Howerton at 417-455-5618 or the Cassville Chamber at 847-2814.

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