The National Urban League’s (NUL) mission is to “enable African Americans to secure economic self-reliance, parity, power and civil rights.”

Many events during the National Urban League Annual Conference, including the career and networking fair, will assist in meeting that goal.

The fair will take place 11 a.m.-5 p.m. July 25 and 26 and targets experienced professionals and recent college graduates.

The fair will bring a vast array of services to participants, including a resume workshop, professional development services and networking events with companies from all over the country. 

Indianapolis Urban League (IUL) Vice President of Programs Kimberly Simmons has been in workforce development for over 20 years. Since joining IUL in 2013, Simmons has provided direct management and services to assure IUL consistently meets the goals of the organization.  

Simmons said participants can expect a plethora of services geared specifically toward assisting job seekers and retaining employment. Participants will be able to meet with professionals and further develop skills to prepare them for the workforce. 

Some of the companies in attendance include Eskenazi Health, Honda, State of Indiana, Bank of America and Rolls-Royce. 

According to Simmons, an overarching goal of the fair is to help people familiarize themselves with opportunities through local employers and companies. She believes it is important for professionals to step outside of the box and be more open to new opportunities they might not typically take advantage of.  

“Some are so focused on one industry, and they are not aware that their skills are transferrable,” Simmons said. 

There will also be a job fair on July 27, which targets non-professionals and will include jobs without education requirements. 

In addition, a panel discussion on July 27 will assist anyone who has a conviction with the job search. The workshop will include discussions with individuals who have been successful with employment after release from jail. 

According to an analysis of Bureau of Labor Statistics Local Area Unemployment Statistics and Current Population Survey data from the fourth quarter of 2018, African American workers had the highest national unemployment rate at 6.5%. That is double the percentage of white workers.  

The career fair will work to alleviate this through specifically targeting companies that will have opportunities available. Simmons said programs are specifically designed for people who may need a little extra help. 

“The beauty of this is IUL has been very established in the African American community,” Simmons said. 

 

Contact newsroom intern Jaclyn Ferguson at 317-924-5143.

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