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2020 could be a good year for Tampa Bay jobseekers

SPC opens Workforce Hub in Tarpon Springs
Posted at 11:40 AM, Jan 08, 2020
and last updated 2020-01-08 18:53:09-05

TARPON SPRINGS, Fla. — According to a new study by Wallet Hub, 2020 could be a good year for jobseekers.

On Wednesday, St. Petersburg College teamed up with CareerSource Pinellas to launch a new workforce hub to help jobseekers in Tarpon Springs.

The new Workforce Hub is expected to create a pipeline for students and community members to gain access to employment and training for jobs and those needing to get their GED.

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SPC's Tarpon Springs Campus officially opened the new Workforce Hub Wednesday inside the BB Building on campus at 600 E Klosterman Road in Tarpon Springs.

Unemployment in Florida is at 3.1 % the lowest level in 14 years.

Rodrigo Davis, the Provost St. Pete College Tarpon Springs says it's a good time for anyone looking to expand their career options. “Folks need to be engaged and take their careers into their own hands to find places like this to better their careers and better their lives,” he explained.

St. Pete College's new workforce hub will work as a one stop shop for free resume advise, training, even job interviews— for college students and anyone hoping to advance their career.

The college also hopes to open a new incubator with a focus on certain in-demand career training like artificial intelligence, biomedical technology, engineering, cybersecurity, manufacturing and information technology.

"This will help our students move from one level to the next by learning a new skill," Tonjua Williams, the President of St. Pete College's Tarpon Springs Campus added.

It comes around the same time as a new report from WalletHub which ranked Tampa and St. Petersburg among the 50 best cities to find a job in 2020.

WalletHub looked at 182 cities, studying their overall job markets. The cities were ranked on two categories: job market and socioeconomics which included factors such as job opportunities, employment growth and unemployment rate.

Tampa ranked as the second best city in Florida and the 43rd best city overall. St. Petersburg ranked 49 overall and 3rd best in Florida. Orlando took the top spot in Florida.

You can read the entire report here.

CareerSource Tampa Bay is also opening up more opportunities for young adults by expanding a six-week summer jobs program.

This upcoming summer, 1,500 young adults will be chosen, compared to 560 students and young adults last year.

The young adults and students work up to 24 hours a week for $11 per hour at government agencies, nonprofit organizations and private businesses. Meantime, CareerSource pays for their wages.

The program will run from June 15 through July 24, 2020.

Florida's unemployment rate is currently at 3.1 percent, the lowest it has been since 2006. Yet, according to state figures, unemployment among people age 16 to 24 is more than 10 percent.

CareerSource leaders anticipate 2020 being a good year for jobseekers in Tampa Bay and across Florida.

Alicia Holmes, a jobseeker who lives in Tarpon Springs, hopes it is her year to land a permanent IT business analyst position. She has had luck with temporary roles but not many permanent jobs since moving to Florida. She says she has spent countless hours applying for jobs, tweaking her resume and getting help from CareeerSource Pinellas.

"I'm hoping that 2020 is going to be my year to find something permanent, make my stake and finish my career," she explained.