Recipe for job fair success: Skills, follow-through, luck staffing firms

Scott Morgan |

After six hours behind a table at a recent job fair, Michael King and Katy Chadwick started sifting through the piles of resumes they’d collected.

It had been a long day, and one of mixed productivity. Although traffic had been fairly brisk at Workplace Staffing’s table, quality applicants were far outweighed by people without the right kind of experience, people who’d dropped a resume on the table with barely a word to spare, people who’d shown up in sweatpants. Read more.

Video: beware job fair blunders.

Reporter Sean F. Driscoll takes exams familiar to the unemployed

For many newly unemployed workers, it’s been decades since they sat at a desk, freshly sharpened No. 2 pencil in hand, and stared down the barrel of a standardized test.

But if they want to further their education or get training, odds are they’ll have to make it through that barrier before they can get down to learning and finding work. Read more.

Illinois can’t get back overpaid aid or let it go

Amy J. Correnti |

It is not Sharon Abels’ fault that she got $9,000 in unemployment checks she wasn’t supposed to receive.

No one seems to dispute this. Not Abels, 65, who was thrilled to hear from the Illinois Department of Employment Security in 2008 that she was eligible for an extension of her benefits and had no reason to question the notice.

Nor does the state employment agency, which has ruled Abels owes the money but hasn’t sued her to recoup the $9,000 or alleged any fraud took place.

Only one problem: The state lacks the authority to forgive Abels’ debt. It’s bound by law to try to collect the money. Read more.

By bridging post-9/11 income gap, some fell far behind

Amy J. Correnti |

When the Federal Aviation Administration shut down the nation’s airspace after the 9/11 terror attacks, Dale Adams assumed it would only be a few days before he’d be back in the air.

Instead, Adams, owner of Blue Sky Banners and mayor of Rockton, found his business severely curtailed even as the country slowly retook the skies. Read more.