Veterans Attend Resource and Career Fair
October 24, 2013
Liset Marquez, Inland Valley Daily Bulletin
Oct. 24--ONTARIO -- U.S. Navy veteran Maria Arrellano recently started her job search and feels employers overlook her because they don't think she's qualified to work in the corporate sector after having spent more than four years in military service.
After finishing her service in 2007, Arrellano enrolled in college and is about to graduate from Cal Poly Pomona with a bachelor's degree in business management, yet the only positions she is finding are entry level.
"It's more because of the lack of experience since I was in the military and everything I did doesn't transfer into the civilian side," said Arrellano at Wednesday's VetReady Resource and Career Fairs at the Sheraton Ontario Airport Hotel.
The event brought 40 recruiters who were promoting job openings as well as opportunities to return to school. The event was organized by the San Diego-based nonprofit VetReady, and is designed to help military personnel match their skills with career goals, said Shelley Griffiths, military liaison for the organization.
"We provide opportunities for veterans to transition into the civilian work force," she said. Griffiths said one of the main issues is convincing local companies and corporations that veterans have the necessary skill sets for the civilian work force.
"They have all the qualities and characteristics that most companies are looking to hire," she said. "We want to empower veterans and their families and we believe the best way to do that is to make sure they have the necessary tools to be successful."
At the same time, the nonprofit also informs local businesses and corporations about the benefits of hiring veterans, such as receiving a tax credit, she said.
Brenda Grinston, a representative with the state's Economic Development Department was among those in attendance on Wednesday. Grinston was there to inform veterans about the services offered by the EDD's Veterans Employment Services Team at the Rancho Cucamonga Employment Resource Center. Grinston said they offer veterans interviewing techniques and tips, send out group emails with job listings as well as resume-writing workshops.
"Anything we can do to help them," Grinston said.
The center will be holding a Veterans Day Recognition event and job fair on Nov. 1 at its resource center in Rancho Cucamonga.
Brandon Sundheimermeyer of Temecula served in the Marines for more than eight years -- until February.
Sundheimermeyer decided to take up work searching for gold in Alaska, which he did from June until the last week of September. Since then, he has been looking for work.
In the Marines, Sundheimermeyer said he worked as a machinist but the problem is the military taught him a traditional technique while most machinists now also use computer technology. He said he wants to focus on getting a career job.
He has submitted at least two dozen resumes and has only received one call back and the recruiter showed no interest in him once Sundheimermeyer revealed he had no computer knowledge in the field.
"I'd like to have a job as soon as possible and I'm thinking of going back to school in the meantime," he said.
(c)2013 the Inland Valley Daily Bulletin (Ontario, Calif.)
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Original headline: Inland Empire veterans attend resource and career fair in Ontario
Source: (c)2013 the Inland Valley Daily Bulletin (Ontario, Calif.)