Job Placement Services Program
The Ely Area Development Association’s predecessor was originally formed in 1959. After a period of inactivity it was re-activated in 1981 when the mining industry experienced a severe setback. In 1996 a name change occurred with the filing of restated Articles of Incorporation. Since at least then, and probably before, its mission has been “To promote the development of economic, educational and charitable opportunities for the common benefit of” the residents of Northeastern Minnesota.” For some three years prior to 2014 the EADA was inactive until April 2014, when newly appointed Directors and Officers assumed responsibility for managing the organization.
In past years programs and initiatives directed by the City of Ely and non-governmental organizations have had limited success in stimulating economic development and job growth. In 1967 the Pioneer Mine ceased operations in Ely. At that time 1775 students were enrolled in the Ely School District and the population of Ely was about 5,200. Since 1980 Ely’s population has declined by more than 28%.
In 2016, U. S. Census Bureau data disclosed that Ely’s Median Household Income was $31,905 while that of St. Louis County was $49,395 and the State of Minnesota was $57,243. The percentage of Ely’s population living below the poverty level was 15% while that of the State was 10.8%. Almost all indices confirm that economic development and job growth in the Ely area is stagnant and in decline.
Slogans promoting Ely as being at the “End of the Road at the Edge of the Wilderness” may stimulate tourism but does little or nothing to encourage employers to open a start-up business in Ely or relocate a business here. If well-paying jobs able to support a family are not available in the Ely area, then job seekers should be assisted in seeking employment with industrial concerns and businesses in Babbitt, Virginia, Hibbing, Mountain Iron, Eveleth and other Iron Range communities.
EADA’s Job Placement Services Program
The Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEEDs) has established offices in many Minnesota communities to aid and assist job seekers in seeking employment. The State’s WorkForce Center Resource offices provide facilities and offer online access to MinnesotaWorks.net to those seeking jobs, yet the Resource area office nearest Ely is located in Virginia, MN.
Relatively few Ely area job seekers utilize DEEDS facilities seeking resume preparation help, to attend workshops held to enhance job seeker’s interviewing skills and to access labor market information (they may not own a computer or reliable vehicle) since job seekers must travel to Virginia or Hibbing to do so. Such facilities and trained personnel are urgently needed in the Ely area.
With the assistance of the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEEDS), we have established a program whereby many of the job seeker services offered by the State of Minnesota in their WorkForce Centers can be offered by the EADA in Ely.
Our Board of Directors and highly motivated staff all serve without compensation.
EADA program activities will include but not be limited to the following:
- Establishing office facilities and providing computers with internet and e-mail access, telephones and printers for job seekers to contact employers, submit job applications and conduct searches for job openings posted on-line by employers;
- Assisting job seekers in the preparation of resumes, word processing, and job applications and perfecting their interviewing skills;
- Assisting job seekers in their search for jobs with interaction by and between DEEDS, NorthForce (Duluth, Iron Range and Superior), Minnesota’s Veterans Employment Representative and the St. Louis County Veterans Service Office
- Establishing a line of communications in our community between employers and job seekers; and interact with the Saint Louis County Public Health & Human Services and the St. Louis County Veteran’s Service office;
- Developing and maintaining a web-site promoting the availability of job-search services and current known open employment positions; and
- Partnering with Northeastern Minnesota Office of Job Training in holding Business of the Day events bringing prospective employers and local job seekers together.