GLENS FALLS, N.Y. (NEWS10) – On Wednesday morning, high schoolers moved in and out of the gym at Glens Falls High School in groups of 20. From one table to the next, they heard about possibilities for their summers. At some, they even got to go hands-on.
“We are having students tape up a screen, showing them how they would set them up if they came in for the summer,” explained Joseph Endieveri, of South Glens Falls-based screen printing company nePROMO. “If they attempt it, we’re giving them a T-shirt. It’s a big hit.”
The screen printer was one of 35 area employers set up inside the high school gym on Wednesday for one of three job fair events, set up by Warren County. Following job fairs at Queensbury Union Free School District and Lake George High School, the fair was a chance for employers big and small to find young workers interested in a summer job, many in the Lake George region’s prominent summer tourism industry.
The companies at Glens Falls ranged from a local kayaking business to regional companies like Stewart’s Shops, as well as Six Flags, seeking student workers to fuel the summer at the Great Escape theme park. Big and small, employers in need of a summer workforce are still having a harder time filling it after the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Post-COVID it’s been a struggle to re-establish those relationships,” said Jeremy Garner, food service director at Double H Ranch. “Once it starts, it catches on. The kids talk to their friends and family, and we’re hoping to re-engage that now.”
Garner was looking for kitchen staff for Double H Ranch, a Lake Luzerne-baed summer camp with robust summer business. He said that any job at a place like the ranch can potentially connect kids with other positions, like event management and lifeguarding, in future summers.
Warren County has organized summer employment fairs at Lake George since 2021, but this is the first time it’s reached bigger. Queensbury’s job fair saw around 1,200 kids attend, meeting with 25 employers. At Lake George, 40 employers met with 348 kids from not only Lake George, but three of its smaller neighbors as well. Students from Warrensburg, Bolton and Hadley-Luzerne school districts came to find out what their summers could look like.
“Their high school principal invited the other schools, and they decided what grade levels to bring,” said Warren County Workforce Development Director Liza Ochsendorf. “I think them getting a taste of it might make them think of also hosting in the future.”
The gym wasn’t the whole story. On the high school’s third floor, employers gave panel-style talks with Q&A. Sessions on resume writing and how to approach a job interview were also offered. At Lake George, students from 10th and 11th grades engaged in a friendly competition over questions about the workforce.