Veterans find job opportunities on Tucson's south side

Veterans find job opportunities on Tucson's south side
(Source: Tucson News Now)

TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) - Stephen McDaniel served four years in the U.S. Army. As a veteran in Tucson, his week is full of job fairs to find a steady paycheck.

"It's hard work to find a job," he said. "It's a career in itself to find a job."

He attended a fair Tuesday, another Wednesday afternoon at El Pueblo Activity Center, and he's set for a third on Thursday. The former human resources specialist has experience in retail, food service, and non-profit work but he's been focused on his next job all month.

"I'd like a position in engineering but if I have to work in retail, I have to work retail," said McDaniel. "It's whatever pays the bills at the end of the day."

He and his wife currently rely on her paycheck, so McDaniel said he's eager to become a dual-income household.  He said her smile motivates him to keep a cheerful outlook as he goes from one job fair to the next.

McDaniel said he appreciates the variety of career fields and open positions offered.

Kevin Gordon, also an Army veteran, recently received a voucher for Section 8 housing. He stopped by Wednesday's job fair on the south side in search of a way to keep a roof over his head.

He said some folks have the wrong idea about unemployed veterans. The former communications repairman said he's willing to work hard for anyone who provides him the opportunity. For him, the job search has been tough.

"There's some of us out here, we look a different way...but we mean well," he said. "We just want to help ourselves. We don't want to become a burden."

Wednesday's job fair was organized by Arizona Veterans Workforce.

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