Need for workers spurs resumption of Healthcare Job Fair

By Bob Fowler
Roane State staff writer

It’s back by popular demand. Roane State’s Healthcare Job Fair was revived April 19 at the request of healthcare providers in urgent need of employees.

Roane State dental hygiene students check out the Fast Pace Urgent Care table during the community college’s Healthcare Job Fair, held in the Coffey-McNally Building on the Oak Ridge campus. Students, from left: Brooke Maxwell, Jessica Maples-Foster and Yesenia Izeta. Company representatives from left: Mendy Pevahouse, Ebony Richardson and Sharon Greenlaw.

Employers kept calling, asking that the community college resume the event, Teresa Duncan said. She’s Roane State’s vice president of workforce and community development and director of Roane State’s Oak Ridge Branch Campus.

Sonya Parker, director of workforce training and development, said it didn’t take her long to recruit employers, who offered ballpoint pens, water bottles, ball caps and other swag to lure students to their tables.

At least twenty-nine healthcare providers attended the event, held April 19 in the atrium of the Coffey-McNally Building. Before the job fair, participants were given tours of healthcare labs in the building.

Roane State student Lauren Walton, with a major in radiology, said she was surprised at how many different healthcare job opportunities are available in the region.

There are almost 2,000 jobs open in Covenant Health, including 234 positions at Methodist Medical Center of Oak Ridge, Covenant Health officials said. Covenant now has some 11,000 employees throughout East Tennessee. New college graduates are landing jobs, representative Laura Chagnon added.

Tennova Healthcare representative Kevin Minton, a 1994 graduate of Roane State, said Tennova has more than 200 job openings spanning a variety of positions. “I loved my time at Roane State,” Minton added.

The healthcare fair at Roane State was launched in 2008 and was an annual event until the pandemic temporarily shuttered it. Organizers hope the tradition has been permanently revived.

Roane State offers a variety of programs that prepare students for in-demand careers in the field of health sciences. For more information, visit roanestate.edu/healthcare.

About Bob Fowler

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