Dothan Job Fair

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A recent spike in regional job growth has created a need for qualified workers.
But the number of those who are unemployed is down.
So more than 50 area employers showed up at the 12th annual community job fair in Dothan today, hoping to recruit the right person for their needs.
Residents of all types, with a variety of qualifications, who are jobless--and even those who are currently working--took time to see what's available.
Debbie Cain, with Manpower Temporary Services says, "We all understand unemployment is extremely low in this area, which is a blessing. But at the same time, there are those that are looking for work."
Job seeker, Kaneshia Thomas says, "Some of my friends are looking for factory jobs and a couple of them are just walking around, looking at what kind of opportunities or people will look at us."
Sara LeGault, another job seeker says, "Medical, law enforcement, national guard, administrative, public affairs--anything basically."
But in this area, the business in most need of workers is the aviation field.
Kevin Taylor, with Alabama Industrial Development Training says, "The most important thing I think companies are looking for are sheetmetal workers--which is aircraft sheetmetal workers--because of the limitations in the area...companies are now looking for people with A&P licenses--which is airframe and power plant."
Pemco was one of the companies represented at the job fair and expects to hire hundreds of people by the end of the year.
They're offering well-paying jobs and stable careers, but like many employers in the wiregrass, look for one main quality in all potential employees.
Kevin Casey with Pemco Aviation Group, "We've found that over the years, the best employees we've had largely are those from our area. They're the people who are most likely to stay and a long-term employee is our absolute best employee."
To be an airframe and power plant mechanic, you have to be trained through the FAA.
And that is one qualification standing in the way for most applicants.
Enterprise-Ozark Community College is expanding it's campus for more aviation training.
Anyone interested in this or other fields of work can seek career counseling at any local career center.
They include the Houston County DHR Jobs Task Force, Dothan Area Career Center and Alfred Saliba Family Services Center.