Enrolment drive successful at US skilled migrants job fair

Date: May 18, 2012

Migration lawyers may soon find themselves dealing with a number of skilled migrants from the US, as an enrolment target at a Houston job fair has been met.

The Australian job fair, due to be held on May 19 and 20, sees recruiters from across the country offering advice on working in their sectors.

Skilled workers in the oil, gas, mining and construction industries are able to attend the event and gain information on filling more than 650 vacancies in the minerals and resources sector.

Australia is hoping the event will attract experts from a range of professions, including welders, electricians, quantitative surveyors, engineers and carpenters.

US war veterans are expected to be in attendance at the event, as many skills are required in the military service.

Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC) spokesman Sandi Logan explained that skilled workers from all over Texas and nearby states have registered with their details, with successful applicants receiving an email from the department with their invitation to the job fair.

"We've had to cut off online expressions of interest as it approached 3,000 because we are limiting each session to ensure each applicant and all of the recruiters have quality time with each other," he revealed.

Mr Logan also revealed details of what information will be covered at the job fair, including a brief summary at the start of each section from immigration officials.

They will outline the visa requirements before inviting participants to visit business and state government representatives to discuss their options further.

"There will be trades recognition officials also attending who will help American journeymen and women begin the process of having their qualifications and certification recognised to enable them to hit the ground running when they arrive," the spokesman continued.

Skilled migrants will be able to arrive in Australia ready to undertake work within their profession - it is hoped that the scheme will attract those who are looking for a step-up in their careers.

One of the advantages of relocating to Australia from the US is that migrants will find many similarities between the two countries, including the lifestyle.

Mr Logan emphasised that Australia is keen to attract Americans who are in search of a challenge.

The DIAC has a strong presence at many events both at home and abroad, including the 2012 Xstrata Mount Isa Mining Expo in Queensland.

Officers were on hand at the event earlier this month to discuss changes to the skilled migration program coming into force on 457 visas.