You can go home again: Muskegon career event aims to draw former residents back to the region

Muskegon’s ReThink West Michigan event will be held at the Block, located above Unruly Brewing in downtown Muskegon.

For those who have moved away from Muskegon, business leaders have a message for you: You can come home.

Muskegon Area First, a countywide economic development corporation, is teaming up with Hello West Michigan and The Right Place to offer ReThink West Michigan, a free networking and career event that hopes to persuade expats to return to an area that’s quickly expanding—and where companies are looking to hire for a wide range of positions.

The event will be held from 5:30-8pm on Wednesday, Nov. 21 at The Block (360 W. Western Ave., above Unruly Brewing). To register, please click here.

“We are excited to host ReThink West Michigan here in Muskegon County again,” said Darryl Todd, the interim president and CEO of Muskegon Area First. “After a successful first year in 2017, we are anticipating a greater number of our companies and participants matching up in 2018.  The event is a creative way to help address a need to increase our talent pool with individuals that possess the skills and knowledge our employers need to continue growing.”

One of six ReThink West Michigan events happening throughout the region, the Muskegon networking affair includes a large lineup of local companies that will be on hand to connect with attendees about careers. Businesses that will attend the Muskegon event include: Meijer, Wesco, Spectrum Health, Mercy Health, Hackley Community Care, Hemisphere Design Works, Arconic, Muskegon County, West Michigan Works, and others.

Available positions with these companies include: production supervisors, engineers, a behavioral health director, medical assistants, supervisors, machine operators, accounting and finance, marketing, human resources, nursing, sales, tech support, corrections and law enforcement, research and development, transport truck drivers, licensed real estate agents, and more.

You don’t have to be a former resident to attend, and anyone looking for a job is welcome. The evening centers on those who have moved away because it’s held at a time many former West Michiganders are back in town—the night before Thanksgiving. The other ReThink West Michigan events are being held in Grand Rapids, Hastings, Ludington, Saugatuck, and Fremont.

“When someone wants to relocate here, they usually just have to apply online or try really hard to network virtually,” said Cindy Brown, executive director of Hello West Michigan and vice president of talent initiatives at The Right Place. “ReThink West Michigan gives interested candidates a chance to connect face-to-face. We’re highlighting the things people want to know about when they think about relocating: career opportunities and lifestyle in West Michigan.”

The night too supports local companies searching to find employees for positions that are going unfilled.

“Companies in West Michigan are continuing to grow at a fast pace, but many face constraints when it comes to finding talent,” said Rachel Bartels, a program manager at Hello West Michigan. “The labor market in the region remains tight, and there are hundreds of positions available. We know that in order to meet demand we will need to attract talent to the area, and who better to fill those jobs than former West Michiganders.”

To find out more information and to register online, visit www.rethinkwm.com.

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