Hundreds learn how to pursue federal jobs
In all, 600 people registered for two sessions Tuesday at Pritchard Community Center that gave out info on landing a job at Fort Knox.

By JOSHUA COFFMAN

May 20, 2008

ELIZABETHTOWN — Kevin Ash returned to his native Hardin County three days ago, retired from the Air Force. And he has his sights set on landing an incoming job at Fort Knox.

Ash was one of 600 people who attended a forum Tuesday to get educated on qualifications needed and the application process for federal jobs. Hundreds packed a three-hour afternoon session at Pritchard Community Center, one of two symposiums sponsored by the Lincoln Trail Workforce Investment Board.

Although Ash has previous human resources experience, he said he will not rule out attending school to get more training in the field or in information technology. Those two lines of work will bring the most jobs to the area as the Army's Human Resources Command consolidates at Fort Knox from its offices in St. Louis, Indianapolis and Alexandria, Va.

Army veteran Nathan McClendon retired to Hardin County two years ago. Originally from Indianapolis, he will consider moving there for a position now and follow it back to Fort Knox when the new center opens in 2010. However, he also has applied with the U.S. Postal Service and may explore that route.

"I just want to get another government job," McClendon said.

Civilian job recruiters said Tuesday that they face a challenge filling 1,500 empty slots moving to Hardin County under the Pentagon's base realignment. However, recruiters said the abundance of jobs is a good problem to have for the surrounding community.

Many entry-level positions likely will be filled with recent graduates and interns.

Roni Grigsby of Hodgenville recently received a degree from Western Kentucky University and attended Tuesday's event. She hopes to get employment from Fort Knox or another federal agency, but the environmental science major said the abundance of HR and IT jobs likely would not help.

"It's not quite what I was looking for, actually," she said during the session's first break. Grigsby hoped to get more information later in the session, as Tracey Levens, an Army human resources specialist, walked potential applicants through an online Army resume builder.

Ash, the retired Air Force veteran, said the federal hiring process was somewhat old hat to him, but he also hoped to pick up a few pointers.

"I'm military, so I'm kind of used to it," he said.

Symposiums also will be held June 3 at Centre Square in Lebanon, June 10 at Rough River State Resort Park in Falls of Rough and June 24 at Gheens Professional Academy in Louisville.

Web sites: Army jobs and resume builder: acpol.army.mil/employment/
Federal job listings: www.usajobs.gov
Additional symposium registration: www.oneknox.com


Joshua Coffman can be reached at (270) 505-1740, or at jcoffman@thenewsenterprise.com.

This story, written by Joshua Coffman, was provided to One Knox courtesy of The News Enterprise. Read more stories from The News Enterprise at www.thenewsenterprise.com.