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Hundreds attend Job Fair

POSTED: Monday, November 7, 2011 - 10:07pm

UPDATED: Monday, November 14, 2011 - 12:42pm

A job fair Monday at the Mall of Louisiana brought people out by the hundreds looking for work. Dozens lined up even before the event started, all searching for the same result.

"I really need a job," said Michael Windham, 18, of Denham Springs. "Got to pay bills. Got to live."

While the national rate remains high, unemployment locally has faired better. It stands at 6.9 percent across the state, and slightly higher for the Baton Rouge area, but for some young adults, the job market has not been kind.

"They're either, 'we're not hiring now,' or 'we'll get back to you,' said Tyler George-Bouvia, 18, of Baton Rouge. "Just got to keep going, keep striving."

There were 17 companies looking to fill 200 spots at Monday's fair. Everything from Build-A-Bear, to the Apple Store. Most of the jobs are seasonal, but with sales predicted to increase, there is hope that some may be offered full-time employment.

"Industry experts say sales are going to be up 2 percent," said Barbara Jans, marketing manager for Mall of Louisiana. "We're hiring with the expectation that we'll meet our sales goal."

Not all in attendance were interested in full-time. Some are just looking for a way to put a few more presents under the tree, for the young ones in the family.

"I'm just looking for extra money for Christmas," said Betty Price, a retired librarian from Denham Springs.

In case you missed Monday's event, the spots that were not filled will still be available with the companies to those who apply.

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