May 07, 2010

6th annual event showcases career and skill-building opportunities for students; media invited to 7:30 A.M. breakfast

Students throughout the Portland metropolitan area can learn about potential careers in business, manufacturing, construction, healthcare, technology, human services, communications and the arts at the NW Youth Careers Expo, sponsored by 25 leading employers and organizations.

The Expo runs from 9a.m. to 2p.m. on Tuesday, May 11in Hall A at the Oregon Convention Center in Portland. Students are invited to attend the Expo at no charge. More than 100 companies, educational and nonprofit organizations will participate as sponsors and exhibitors.

Now in its sixth year, the Careers Expo connects with diverse teenage populations and has drawn increasingly larger crowds of high school students from throughout the metro region, including the Portland, David Douglas and Vancouver school districts. Participating companies include NIKE, PCC Structurals, Wieden+Kennedy, Bank of America, Microsoft, Providence Health Systems, CH2MHill, the Portland Trail Blazers and the City of Portland.

Event co-founder Drew Park of Columbia Wire and Iron said, “The considerable workforce needs of local industry are a real opportunity for our young people. The Expo showcases family wage jobs in several sectors – giving students a real-world perspective of what’s possible for their future.”

During the Expo
The Oregon Staffing Association, in partnership with Portland Human Resources Management Association & SW Washington Human Resources Management Association, have recruited more than 90 human resources and industry professionals who will volunteer their time to help young people prepare for job opportunities by conducting mock interviews, offering instruction in completing an application and making a good impression, and providing career guidance.

Students may also meet with university and community college representatives to explore post-high school educational resources.

Members of the media are invited to the NW Youth Careers breakfast on May 11 at 7:30 A.M. in Room B113. Leaders from business, industry, government and education will gather to open the Expo. Carole Smith, Superintendent of Portland Public Schools will speak and students from throughout the region will also be present.

At the Expo, students can try welding, operate a crane, dress mannequins and maneuver a robotic arm in the hands-on demonstration area of the exhibit hall, which will also include demos for other computer-controlled equipment, plasma cutting, wire stripping, door drilling, and a Portland General Electric line truck with utility bucket. FIRST Robotics will be showing off their competition robots throughout the day.

Major sponsors of the NW Careers Expo include the Portland Development Commission, Columbia Wire & Iron, Providence Health & Services, Gunderson LLC, Kaiser Permanente and US Bank. The Expo is organized by the Portland Workforce Alliance and coordinated by the Total Event Connection.

Representatives of organizations who are available for interviews include:

Drew Park, Columbia Wire & Iron, 971-404-2472;

Kevin Jeans-Gail, Portland Workforce Alliance, 503-201-1803;