APAC job fair helps boost local job growth

On the top of any politician or candidates’ priority list right now is job creation. While there may be a perception that companies aren’t hiring, that’s not necessarily the case in our area.

APAC is a customer service company that’s been weathering these tough economic times better than most and instead of laying-off, they’re adding employees. At today’s job fair, they had one goal in mind: get La Crosse residents back to work.

Like many people living in the struggling economy, Terry Luedke is looking for a little extra cash.

“I have a family of two teenagers at home so the economy is kind of tough right now,” Luedke said. “So, I’m hoping to just kind of get ahead a little bit.”

Luedke has a full time job but she struggles being a single parent. She’s one of dozens of people going through the application, interview and potential job offer process all in one day.

“The flexibility of the hours is what really drew me in actually because of having another full time job the flexibility of those hours would really be important to me,” Luedke said.

While the job fair may help Luedke land a second job, it could also fill a void for APAC. The company is growing quickly and in need of more employees.


“Our business is we support our clients and their businesses are growing,” said Mike Bugaj, human resource director, APAC. “Telecommunications and healthcare, those industries are strong no matter what you might hear there’s still hiring going on there. They give their business to us to manage and we’ve got a current work order for 150 positions.”

And it’s job fairs like this one that Congressman Ron Kind says are moving the local economy in the right direction.

“That is the name of the game right now, is doing everything we can, working with the private sector businesses large and small to get this economy back on track creating good paying jobs because a growing economy solves a lot of problems,” Kind said.

Congressman Kind says while the La Crosse area is making progress, there’s still work that needs to be done.

“One of the concerns I have right now is that we do have kind of a skills mismatch with the new jobs being created and what people looking for a job can offer,” Kind said. “So, we have to do a better job I think in the job creation programs and in the education level of making sure our students and workers are developing the right job skills to meet the new jobs that are being created.”

This is just one of the steps to get people back to work and the economy back on the right track.

APAC’s goal was to make at least 75 job offers but if they didn’t reach that today, they’ll be working to hire the rest by the end of the week.