FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. — If you’re hoping on going to the Site C job fair in Fort St. John today, be prepared to wait in a line up.
The job fair started at noon, and by 12:45 p.m., 300 people walking through the doors of the Pomeroy Hotel, after waiting in the cold.
BC Hydro’s Northern Community Relations Manager Bob Gammer told Energetic City the fair in Dawson Creek saw over 1,000 prospective employees eagerly drop off their resumes.
“It’s going to be a big day, again,” he said. “Today we’re expecting upwards of 1,000 again, could be higher. We’ve got a fantastic start so far. Over 150 people in the first 20 minutes, and the line up goes outside the building.”
A group of applicants said they were expecting it to be busy, and were just getting to the front of the line after an hour of waiting.
While the rush of people at the beginning of the fair doesn’t come as an immediate surprise, Gammer says those hoping it slows down later today might not be in luck.
“What we saw in the smaller communities was a slow down mid-afternoon — quieter, you could actually not have to wait so long, actually get a few minutes more speaking with the contractors. But Dawson Creek really showed us, in the larger communities, its busy all day. So we expect it to be busy all day, until 7.”
Jim Schilling with Peace River Hydro Partners is one of the team members looking through resumes today, and they took a note from yesterday’s amount of traffic to bring more additions to consult with applicants.
“The line ups were over three hours long yesterday, so we’re trying to accommodate people and put them through a little bit quicker,” he said, saying they weren’t done in Dawson Creek until 7:20 p.m., when the fair actually closes at 7 p.m.
He adds that they are looking for many different skilled workers, including equipment operators, carpenters, surveyors, HSC staff, and administration, just to name a few. The resumes will be reviewed over within the coming weeks, as the team is just accepting them and categorizing them today.
“Out of the 1,500 people that we’re hiring, we have 47 that are basically senior management, trying to get the project ready to go,” Schilling said. “We’re hoping to have about 600 people on site by this fall, so we’re hoping to start going through resumes within eight weeks time and start building that them.”
The building of foundation will be starting shortly, following by construction of the actual dam, Schilling says.
Peace River Hydro Partners is still accepting applications from people who don’t attend the actual job fair. They can apply by sending their resume to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Next week, BC Hydro continues along their way through Northern B.C. to scout out potential employees. Prince George is the next stop, where Hydro will set up shop on Monday afternoon. From there, they head to Mackenzie and Quesnel, before taking off to Fort Nelson in early March.