Seeking a Job after 55 - KTTC Rochester, Austin, Mason City News, Weather and Sports

By Fanna Haile-Selassie

Seeking a Job after 55

AUSTIN, MN (KTTC-DT) -- Many of us know someone who's lost their job. But if you've been affected by the economy and you're over the age of 55, it may seem harder to find employment. That's why the Mower County Senior Center held a job fair today just for those 55 and older.

"We need to have seniors for the blood mobile."

It's a job fair strictly for the baby boomer generation. A generation in which many have the idea it's harder to find a job.

"Whole lot of employers, I do think they look at age," explains Donald Fuller, a retired person, now looking for work.

"Yes it is. I think it is harder. But the jobs are out there," comments Gloria Gilbert, another person look for a job.

And at this job fair, those looking for work only have to compete with people in their age range.

"Now we are seeing people that are healthy, 20, 25 years after they retire, where that never used to be that way. So, not only do you have to think about that when you retire, but you have to stretch those funds for the longevity of your life," says Mower county Senior Center director Sara Schafer.

All have life stories and many have struggled with problems leaving them not as physically capable to do some jobs. But they're willing to do what's necessary.

"It's slow out there. The company I was working for had a massive lay-off. So, I'm out looking. And I know it's tough to get a job at my age, but I'm going to plug away and see what we can find," exclaims Norm Scherbenske.

Many of those looking for work here at the job fair expected to have retired by now, but those we spoke with say, their spirits are still high.

"I have plenty of grand kids that keep a smile on my face, you know. So, I'm basically, I keep an upbeat mind set," says Fuller.

"I think the work is out there, but you have to go out and find it. It's not going to come to you," replies Gilbert.

Riverland Community College and the Mower county Senior Center hope to match up seniors with the jobs they need. They also want to help those just looking for volunteer work.

Something to keep seniors active and involved with the community.

Riverland Community College is also hosting a Senior Expo on May 6th at the 4 seasons Arena in Owatonna. And Riverland wants to encourage senior citizens to participate in all types of job fairs and get rid of the stigma that they're just for the younger generation.

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