Labor department event set Friday for Plasan workers
BENNINGTON -- A day of employment workshops will be held this week for soon-to-be laid off Plasan Carbon Composites workers, as well as anyone else looking for work.
The event is at the Southwest Vermont Career Development Center, located at 321 Park Street. Wendy Morse, regional manager for the Vermont Department of Labor, said registration begins at 8:30 a.m. this Friday with workshops on everything from résumé writing to interviewing beginning at 9 a.m. and ending at 4 p.m.
Plasan Carbon Composites will be closed then for Good Friday, said Morse.
In February, Plasan Carbon Composites announced it would be closing its facility at 139 Shields Drive and moving to Grand Rapids, Mich. in the middle of May. The plant has 143 full-time employees.
The company's president, James Staargaard, said the move is because Plasan already has a facility in Grand Rapids, which is closer to its primary market. Plasan Carbon Composites makes carbon fiber car parts, specifically for the Viper SRT and Corvettes. He said there was nothing the town of Bennington could have done to keep the company, and he praised the quality of workers at the Bennington plant.
Morse said representatives from the Vermont Department of Labor were at the plant last week giving presentations on services being offered by the department as well as the Small Business Administration to help them find work.
She said a number of other employers across the state have contacted the department looking to hire soon-to-be former Plasan employees.
Friday's event will be a series of workshops, all free of charge, that will cover interviews, résumés, navigating a job fair, small business development, the Workforce Investment Act, which opens up federally funded training opportunities, and career assessment.
The event targets Plasan workers and is being held in response to the pending layoffs, but anyone is welcome, said Morse.
They will likewise be welcome at a job fair on May 8 from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. at the same location. She said about 30 employers so far are expected to attend.
Contact Keith Whitcomb Jr. at email@example.com or follow him on Twitter @KWhitcombjr.
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