Dream Chaser Day to help locals chase careers

Published 7:28 pm Monday, January 22, 2018

Hundreds of new jobs are expected to be available in LaGrange in the next year, as numerous employers open up for business. That’s why it’s more important than ever to know how to set yourself apart, so that you can stick out from the crowd from that first handshake.

On Saturday, experts will help locals prepare for that job growth with help available on everything from getting a job to succeeding at that job at Dream Chaser Day at the Callaway Conference Center at West Georgia Technical College.

The free event will focus on sharpening “soft skills” that are needed for a wide variety of jobs and will feature experts trained in helpingpeople overcome some common obstacles to finding and succeeding in a career.

“It gives people the influence that will allow them to get the job, and the influence that will allow them to progress and do well in a job and hopefully move up,” said Curtis Brown, a local entrepreneur. “Those skills and influence that we are looking at are in terms of resume prep, interview skills — how to successfully interview — time management, financial management, social media etiquette and then we have home ownership.”

Organizers hope that the event will help people learn how to thrive and chase their dreams instead of just surviving by showing them how to highlight the skills that they already have.

“It can help you stand out among other applicants if you are trying to get the job,” Brown said. “It is going to help you stand out among your coworkers if you are already in the job, and you are looking to progress or get a promotion or do well. These are the types of things that give you the influence to stand out, but more importantly it creates a mindset around personal accountability.”

People will also be on hand to connect people with the community resources that they need for their careers like West Georgia Technical College, Top Story Leadership, the Georgia Dream Program, Blessed Realty, Community Action for Improvement, Stephen’s Premium Business Consultation and Wealth Wave.

“There are resources in their community,” said Teara Harris, a local human resources consultant, who is helping organize the event. “That is the most important thing because if you know your resources, you can figure the rest of it out, but if you don’t know what is in your community and know where to go, you are going to be forever lost.”

Major manufactures like Jindal Film and Sentury Tire are slated to open in LaGrange in the near future, and existing companies like Duracell and Interface have expanded within the last year. These companies need good workers with a wide variety of skills.

“We have a big range of manufacturing opportunities, and it is not like back in the day when you worked in manufacturing, and you were like, ‘oh, I’m going to get dirty,’” Harris said. “There are a lot of robotics jobs that you can get. (There are) a lot of jobs where you have to have a certain skill set.”

The event’s organizers hope that anyone wanting to move up in their career will attend, including adults who aren’t sure the incoming job opportunities are a good fit for them.

“This gets people job ready with the mindset of wanting to work and wanting to take advantage of all the great opportunities that we have coming before us,” Brown said. “This is the first step of preparing people to be in a position to go to the next step of getting job ready. That is really what it is about.”

Mack and Ria Story of Top Story Leadership are scheduled to present their “Blue Collar Leadership Program” at the event, and Viedra Sullivan of Northbound 7 is also set to be a keynote speaker at the event.

Dream Chaser Day 2018 will take place at the Callaway Conference Center at 220 Fort Drive on Saturday from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. The event is free to the public, but participants are asked to register online at Dreamchaserday.com.