Collin County’s NAACP branch rescheduled its inaugural virtual job fair to help students of historically Black colleges and universities nationwide find job opportunities for March 18, according to a press release from Collin County NAACP.
The event had to be rescheduled because of the winter storm that hit Texas in early February, according to Lisa Bethea, Collin County NAACP job fair chair. Since the event is being held on Zoom, Bethea said the fair’s hosts would’ve been unable to join because of connectivity issues caused by the storm.
“Most of our speakers were either unable to join, or it wasn’t really safe for them to join because they’re based here in Texas in different areas, and either did not have power or electricity or internet or all of the three,” Bethea said.
Three honorary hosts will be in attendance at the event — Plano Mayor Harry LaRosiliere, Plano Chief of Police Ed Drain and Paul Quinn College President Dr. Michael Sorrel. The fair’s job opportunities focus on local police departments and school districts across Collin County.
June Jenkins, Collin County NAACP president, said Chief Drain was chosen as a speaker since they are looking at job opportunities in local police departments. Collin County NAACP chose Dr. Sorrel and Mayor LaRosiliere for their working relationships with Paul Quinn College.
Originally, Jenkins said the job fair was supposed to happen in-person in April 2020 but got canceled when COVID-19 hit and moved to 2021. The reason Collin County NAACP decided to create the job fair was to increase diversity — especially in police departments and school districts.
“We do have corporations and local businesses that are outside of the police and the school district,” Jenkins said. “But the intent was to attract people of color to come in and secure job opportunities and bring diversity to our school districts and police departments.”
Two graduating seniors who attend the job fair’s opening session will receive scholarships to help them finish getting their degrees. Those in the running for the scholarship have already applied and submitted their applications, Jenkins said.
The job fair will take place from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m, and registration is complimentary. Click here to register.
“We’re really grateful for all of the participation from the school districts and local law enforcement agencies,” Bethea said. “Without them, we wouldn’t be able to move forward with the job fair and, of course, the committee that’s behind planning it.”