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updated: 2/19/2013 7:37 PM

Arlington Heights struggles to gain interest in teen job fair

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  • A teen job fair planned at the Arlington Heights Memorial Library in March may have to be canceled for a lack of interested employers.

      A teen job fair planned at the Arlington Heights Memorial Library in March may have to be canceled for a lack of interested employers.
    File photo by Bill Zars | Staff Photographer


With less than three weeks until the first Teen Job Fair in Arlington Heights, officials are still trying to get more employers involved to make sure the event doesn't have to be canceled for the second year in a row.

So far four employers -- the Arlington Heights Memorial Library, the Arlington Heights Park District, Arlington Heights School District 25 and Mariano's Fresh Market -- have signed up to participate in the teen job fair to be held at the library from 9 a.m. to noon Saturday, March 9, said Sue Gwinnup, superintendent of recreation at the Arlington Heights Park District and a member of the village's youth commission.

Officials were hoping to get 12 to 15 employers involved, so they have extended the deadline to get involved until Thursday, Feb. 28, Gwinnup said.

In 2012, the commission had to cancel a planned teen job fair because of lack of employer interest.

"The youth in Arlington Heights are looking for places to work, and we're hoping a job fair will put the businesses and teens together and make it a win-win for the community," she said.

Gwinnup said the youth commission would also be interested in having volunteer organizations be a part of the job fair as well.

The youth commission has been approaching employers and reaching out to the chamber of commerce for help getting more businesses involved.

"I don't know if the economy is in a situation where employers don't want to hire teens or if they just aren't hiring anyone," Gwinnup said.

She said she has reached out to grocers, stores at Randhurst and the new Star Cinema Grill opening in downtown Arlington Heights, but none are confirmed yet. Gwinnup said companies that want to get involved can call her at (847) 506-7870.

"We're hoping if we can get it off the ground this year, it will keep growing from there," she said. "We are a little surprised there wasn't a better response, but it's a learning experience."

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