Job Fair Provides Career Perspectives

El Vaquero Staff Writer

Despite the heat, GCC students came out in search of jobs and met with representatives of 46 different companies in the San Rafael Plaza on April 9 for the GCC annual job fair.

Kathy Kostjal, technician for the student employment services, and assistant Nane Kakosian came up with the idea of having a job fair here at GCC after seeing it at Pierce college.

Kostjal said that the plan was to have employers come to the students, creating an opportunity for students to talk to different representatives on their “home turf.”

The first Job Fair organized by Kostjal and Kakosian took place in 2000 and has been going on annually. “We hope that one day we can do this twice a year,” said Kostjal.

Among the organizations present were the California Department of Corrections, the Red Cross, the Glendale Fire and Police departments, the LAPD, the Los Angeles County Department of Health Services, as well as Robinson’s May and Avon.

Agencies such as Adecco, Volt and Abigail Abbott proivded staff members from various companies to accept applications for office assistant positions.

Looking for recruiters were the United States Marines, the Army, the Air Force and the FBI.

Interested in the United States Army, Jay Stevens, 18, business marketing major, had been talking to the representatives all day. “I would go to the service,” Stevens said, “The only thing is, I don’t like waking up early.”

And looking to see what kinds of jobs are going to be available in the future, Johnny Safa 21, graphic design major, said, “I never really thought about being a police officer, but with the benefits they offer, I might consider it.”

Safa, having already taken a first aid class at GCC, was also interested in working with the Red Cross. “The only thing is that it might interfere with school,” Safa said.

The Red Cross offers a full-time volunteer program, which lasts 10 1/2 months, with paid living expenses. The participants get trained to teach first aid and CPR. After completing the program, the volunteer gets an educational award of $4,725.

Amanda Holland, 22, who has been with the program for 8 1/2 months, said, “It’s a really good way to benefit the community as well as to pay for education.” Another career that benefits the community is the fire department.

The Glendale Fire Department explorer program is for volunteers from ages 16 to 20 who are interested in exploring fire fighting as a career.

“I got some useful information about joining the fire department,” said David Sorkness, 19, fire science major. “The explorer program is something that I look forward to getting into.”

Amy Krieger, 20, liberal studies major, said, “I found interesting jobs that are a possible option after college, like working in child care.” She found the job fair helpful because she said that it was not just the variety of jobs that made it helpful, but the variety of positions available as well.

Krieger pointed out that students could even find a job if they just wanted to work for the summer. “There was a lot of information and representatives to talk to,” said Krieger.

Not everyone shared Krieger’s optimism. Lucy Gao, 40, studying non-credit, said that because of her limited English, it was not easy for her to find a part-time job. She said, “I filled out only one application and that is because the company said if they need someone to speak Chinese; they would call me.”

Although the job fair did not cater to all, during this event, the job center on campus offers year-round job postings.

The center, on the second floor of the San Rafael building, provides information about different employers and offers off and on campus job referrals. The can also be accessed at