Employment | News

2nd Annual Port Connect Set For This Thursday

NANAIMO – Students and employment seekers can attend the 2nd Annual Port Connect Thursday November 7 to survey possible job opportunities with companies that conduct their business on the waterfront.

The Port of Nanaimo, in partnership with Work BC Employment Services Centre, coordinated the event, designed to link students and people of all ages with contacts in the marine industry for possible employment.

On hand will be 18 participating exhibitors, including Seaspan, BC Ferries, DP World, Tetra Tech, WCMRC, Search & Rescue, Island Ferries, Herold Engineering, Helijet, Western Stevedoring, BC Vehicle Processing Centre, Canadian Coast Guard, Gowlland Towing, Western Marine Institute, Vancouver Pile Driving, Work BC and the Port of Nanaimo.

“We want to link the marine industry employers and possible employees, as there are tremendous opportunities for jobs that pay well,” says Port Chair Donna Hais. “Last year we saw that people were excited to meet and discuss what the future could hold, so from that perspective, we felt that we had to hold Port Connect in 2019.”

Last year’s exhibitors and attendees alike were pleased with the event.  One exhibitor said “I saw over 100 people and a lot of great candidates – one attendee saw his picture in this year’s advertising and told us that he was hired from his contact and discussions at last year’s event.”

Said another: “You have assembled so many partners in one room that showcase how the Port gets its business done. It was excellent that we are all together at the same time and can spend time with each other. “

There were some referrals between exhibitors.  John Lucas of Seaspan said “One candidate I met was missing a couple of credentials, so we told them to go see an individual at another booth for training; work for that company at the booth next to them, and then, you can qualify for work with us.“

Attendees appreciated the opportunity to meet potential employers. ”I had no idea that these companies had local contacts right here in Nanaimo,” they said. “I know so much more about how the Port operates.”  Another added: “You’ve provided so many key contacts with so many companies. This would take me weeks to research and to secure an appointment with these key contacts.”

Port Co-CEO Ian Marr said “The program we put together for Port Connect was slightly different in that we assembled key port partners within companies so candidates could engage in a conversation.  It was not like an interview, but more of an informal conversational setting, a networking style, which provided a way for both sides to ask questions they might not ask in a more formal setting.”

Peter McGee, a Job Developer with WorkBC, said “We are beyond pleased with the turnout and result in 2018. While not technically a ‘hiring fair’, this provided an opportunity for job seekers and professionals to connect with the local marine sector in a unique way.

For more information go to https://npa.ca/portconnect