Hiring Our Heroes: Veterans seek jobs at job fair

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EAU CLAIRE, Wis (WEAU)--Veterans across the country and in the Chippewa Valley are on the job hunt.

According to the latest report from the U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics the unemployment rate among younger veterans continues to out-pace the share of out-of-work civilians with nearly 1 in 10 vets from Iraq and Afghanistan eras still hunting for jobs.

Hiring Our Heroes Job Fair is helping our veterans find work opportunities in their communities.

The Eau Claire Chamber of Commerce and the Eau Claire County Job Center's Office of Veteran's Services teamed up to bring dozens of local employers and veteran’s together.

"I deployed in 2009 to Bagdad Iraq," Kyle Kohner, 25, is a proud National Guard soldier.

"We trained Iraqi’s to be corrections officers and take over in prisons," said Kohner.

But he says returning from Iraq had its challenges, “I came home, I didn't have a job,” said Kohner.

Although he's found occasional seasonal work, Kyle says he's having trouble deciding on a career path.

"Things like this are awesome, they have a mix of everything from police officers and security and if that’s not your thing theirs is manufacturing and labor," said Kohner.

Tobie Matherne with Chippewa Sand Transport says the job fair is a, win, win for job seekers and employers.

"It's great to recruit for us but also just to talk to veterans because I was just there, "said Matherne.

Matherne, a former marine, says military skills and experiences are what a lot of employers like to see.

“Veterans have a different skill set then a lot of other employees. They come to work on time and do a good job. They have leadership abilities and know how to work as team. We're looking forward to hiring veterans,” said Matherne.

For Kyle that's good news.

“I'm pretty much up for anything, I’m willing to learn and I’m a fast learner. I've talked to a couple people in manufacturing and security and they seemed eager," said Kyle.

Organizers of the said they expected to see a couple hundred veterans come through the fair Tuesday. This is the second annual Hiring Our Heroes Job Fair in Eau Claire.