Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Center Matches Hill Residents With Arena Jobs

If you want a job at the new Penguins arena or in the hotels and shops that will be located nearby, your best bet will be at the First Source Center in the Hill District. The center is now under construction in the first floor of the Hope Square building on Centre Avenue. The community benefits agreement reached between the Penguins, local governments and residents of the Hill District required the creation of the jobs center in order to help the neighborhood gain from having the development. The CBA also requires that the First Source Center get job notices one week before they're distributed anywhere else.

One week isn't a lot of extra time. Evan Frazier with the Hill House Association, which is overseeing the First Source Center, says that means they'll have to be aggressive in recruiting job seekers, documenting what skills they have, and giving them any additional preparation they need to have a successful application. And even though the CBA was drafted with the goal of helping Hill residents, Frazier says the First Source Center will help anyone who shows up.

Ken Nesbit directs the First Source Center. Since it's not open yet, Nesbit says he's been distributing job notices through Hill District and other organizations. He also recently held a trade fair where residents could learn about apprenticeships and other training programs. The First Source Center is expected to open later this summer.

Photo: Evan Frazier and Ken Nesbit stand outside the still-under-construction First Source Center.

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