The University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB) understands that one of the most important things community members are looking for from anchor institutions is jobs. In fact, the Strategic Plan for UMB includes the following:
An effective partnership, as a Baltimore City anchor institution, with surrounding communities resulting in meaningful and sustainable educational, employment, and economic opportunities that serve as a catalyst for community empowerment.
To meet this strategic objective, the Office of Community Engagement’s (OCE) Workforce Initiatives program, in conjunction with Human Resources’ Office of Staffing and Career Services, hosts information sessions for community members to learn about positions at the University and its sister institution, the University of Maryland Medical Center (UMMC). These events provide community members who are interested in working at these institutions information about job requirements, the application process, and what the institutions are looking for. Attendees also learn about Workforce Wednesdays and other programming at UMB’s Community Engagement Center (CEC).
For participating anchor institution hiring managers, it gives them an opportunity to meet potential employees who live right in their neighborhood, a bonus for institutions whose employees need to be able to make it to work in inclement weather.
In our UMB security officer recruiting information session held in July 2017, more than 100 people attended and were able to use the CEC’s computer lab to get access to the online application. A little more than 50 attendees applied for 10 open security officer positions, and two were hired. Another three people who attended were hired by UMMC.
Since that time, OCE’s Workforce Initiatives has hosted information sessions for UMB’s housekeeping services, UMMC’s food services, and UMMC’s environmental services departments. These events have been very well received by the community, with more than 90 percent of respondents to our survey stating they would recommend these events to a friend and 100 percent rating the events “excellent” or “very good.”
Here are quotes from an anonymous survey of attendees:
- The open house as a whole was very informative and thank you for the warm hospitality.
- The event was very professional and helpful for our community.
- I like how I was offered to come back to the place if I need help on my résumé. We can do line dancing, Zumba, and yoga for free.
- The speakers were awesome. Everyone was so polite. It was an awesome experience.
- I like how the employees was giving us their story and also steering us in the right direction.
For more information, visit the CEC’s Workforce Wednesdays Facebook page.