Traditional job fairs can feel a bit like cattle calls. You bounce from booth to booth, hoping to impress a jaded recruiter while you hand out résumés that might never even get read.
But the organizers of the Global 1000 Miami Hiring Event, a weekend-long session of employment, empowerment and entrepreneurial discussions for minority communities in Miami, have a more disruptive vision of what a job fair should be.
Attendees at the three-day conference’s main event, to be held from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. on Feb. 10 at Topgolf, 17321 NW Seventh Ave. in Miami Gardens, will be able to interview directly — and possibly land jobs on the spot — with nearly 40 participating employers, including All Florida Construction, Cambridge Academy, Ecotech Vision, Home Depot, Amazon and Natural Vitamins Laboratory.
Before the hiring fair, men will be able to receive free haircuts, receive job-readiness training and enter drawings to win free suits from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. on Feb. 9 at the Liberty Square Community Center, 6304 NW 14th Ave. in Miami.
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Other conference events include a roundtable discussion of trends and funding strategies within the African-American tech industry; a workshop examining business opportunities with Caribbean countries; and empowerment lectures by speakers such as Xtreme Solutions founder/CEO Phyllis Newhouse and Urban America president/CEO Richmond McCoy.
Admission to all events is free, but registration is required via Eventbrite.
Global 1000 Miami is the latest edition of a national entrepreneurial initiative conceived by Dr. Lance McCarthy, an economist and financial advisor. McCarthy organized the inaugural job-creating conference in Ferguson, Missouri, in 2016, after the police shooting of an unarmed black teenager in that city led to protests and demonstrations.
“We wanted to come up with an economic solution to the unrest and injustice that took place in Ferguson,” McCarthy said. “We know there are already a lot of great social organizations, so we wanted to have a quantifiable measure.”
That solution, said McCarthy, became finding 1,000 jobs for African-Americans from two sources: Existing corporations and minority-owned businesses, with an emphasis on tech firms poised to grow with financing and investment.
Subsequent hiring events in Baltimore, Chicago and Los Angeles have raised the profile of Global 1000 and pulled in financial and philanthropic support from people such as Ray Lewis, the former linebacker for the Baltimore Ravens, and Priceline co-founder Jeff Hoffman.
McCarthy said that at least 33 percent of all attendees at previous hiring fairs either landed a full-time or part-time job or secured a second interview.
For the Miami edition, Global 1000 is teaming up with Urban Philanthropies, the non-profit 501.3c organization devoted to transforming disinvested urban communities in South Florida.
“We thought the work that Global is doing was consistent with our mission,” said Philip Bacon, president of Urban Philanthropies. “Entrepreneurs can create jobs. We want to foster those kinds of businesses within the communities that we serve.”
The city governments of Miami, North Miami, Miami Gardens and Miami-Dade County will be among the employers attending the hiring fair. The event is sponsored by cash and in-kind donations from the University of Miami, Florida International University, St. Thomas University and the Beacon Council, among others.
City of Miami Mayor Francis Suarez, North Miami Councilman Philippe Bien-Aime and Miami Gardens Mayor Oliver Gilbert are all scheduled to speak during the event.
For a complete schedule of events, visit the fair’s Eventbrite page or call 305-424-8741, ext. 2.