Many in the area seem to be unsure exactly what OhioMeansJobs does in Fulton County.
“I think people don’t realize we are here, or make the assumption that we serve only the underprivileged and that simply isn’t true, said OhioMeansJobs|Fulton County Workforce Development Coordinator Cara Leininger. “We serve all residents of Fulton County.”
OhioMeansJobs|Fulton County, otherwise known as Workforce Development, operates under the guidelines of the Workforce Innovation Opportunity Act (WIOA) to provide a single “one stop shop” system that offers an array of employment, education and training programs to individuals, businesses and youth.
“We exist to help both youth and adults find employment, refine job skills, and to provide career and educational planning,” said Leininger. “We also partner with employers in a variety of ways, such as assisting them in posting jobs to the OhioMeansJobs board, conduct employment screening and testing as well as other initiatives.”
Sherri Thomas, Recruiter for PIC, A Trigo Company, has seen success in partnering with OhioMeansJobs|Fulton County. “In the past seven months, I’ve been able to recruit 60 new hires for our new contract with IAC (Wauseon).”
Thomas uses the Workforce Development facilities to offer open house and hiring events. The facility offers rooms for employers to conduct job fairs, and has a computer lab for assessment and training skills evaluation. “Our relationships with businesses are mutually beneficial,” Leininger said, “when we are able to connect employers with employees successfully, it’s a win-win.”
Leininger’s office houses the WIOA youth program which provides comprehensive services that emphasize the long-term development of youth ages 16-24. At the age of 16, Shaunte started in the program by working on multiple job skills such as how to complete resumes, how to use the employment resources and how to sustain gainful employment. “This program prepared me for my success,” she states. Shaunte was able to graduate high school and receive a cosmetology license while in the program. She has been employed as a stylist for the past five years. “Looking back at the WIOA program, I truly gained work ethic and was able to refine my personal and leadership development skills. I advise anyone ages 16-24 seeking employment or training skills to contact the OhioMeansJobs Center for assistance.”
Leninger has also spent time building relationships with the schools. “Our philosophy is the same with our school age youth and our goal is to give them the tools and the skills necessary to have successful careers in the future.”
Leininger has gone into classrooms teaching “soft skills”, resume building and interviewing techniques. Gene Rupp, Director of Student Services at Fayette Local Schools said, “I believe the connection between local schools and OhioMeansJobs training has made a significant impact in the lives of our students. This partnership has become an integral part of our educational programming.”
The Workforce Development Office is located on the first floor in the Detwiler Building at 604 S. Shoop Ave., Suite 110 in Wauseon. The office offers a resource room with printed materials, internet access, copy machine, fax machine, telephones and local job postings for the public. Their office hours are Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Every Wednesday, they post “Job Leads of the Week,” which is a listing of job postings from Fulton County newspapers, OhioMeansJobs website and other resources, to the Fulton County Ohio website “Notify Me” system. This system allows for subscribers to sign up to receive a text and/or email notifications every Wednesday and can be accessed at www.fultoncountyoh.com. They also have a Twitter account @FultonWorkforce. For questions, call 419-337-9215 or email Leininger at [email protected].