The Portage Collegiate Institute held a job fair last week, which is the first event the school's been able to host since the COVID-19 pandemic began.

Blair Hordeski, the career development coordinator for the Portage School Division, says students at PCI have worked on job hunting skills leading up to this, including making resumes and doing mock interviews. He adds while they've been doing what they can to get the students ready, it can be scary to walk into a store and ask for a job.

"It was great that we were able to connect the employers with their students. We set up on the football field and had plenty of social distancing," notes Hordeski. "The students were able to go from employer to employer, it was a lot less intimidating than having to walk into an actual business to talk to an employer. They had home-field advantage, so to speak."

He says the support from local employers was great to see, as it can be a bit of a struggle finding entry-level jobs for any number of reasons, from nobody hiring people at the time, to even social anxiety issues. He goes into detail on what PCI did to keep everyone in attendance as safe as possible.

"We used much of the football field, and we asked all of our guests to provide proof of double vaccination," explains Hordeski. "We all wore masks through the activity as well."

He notes an activity they did to encourage students to participate was a type of bingo, where the more employers you spoke to, the more bingo dabs your card would have. The cards would then be collected and used for prize draws.

Hordeski adds, in closing, he's just glad the day was a success and is excited to host more events like this in the future.