Organizers of the WorkForce Job Fair said 3,200 job seekers filled the Blaisdell Exhibition Hall Wednesday. Greg Wilson was one of them. He was nervous, anxious and honest.
"To live and to support your family, work is what you do," he said.
But what do you do with limited trade experience? And a daughter ready for preschool? And a pressing need to go from stay-at-home dad to bread winner?
Job fairs offer hope.
"People who are willing to do whatever it takes to get hired, I think those are the people who get hired first," job fair director Beth Busch said.
This year 178 employers signed up, 18 more than last year.
This is the third year Kathy Yarong greeted job seekers at her booth for Aloha Pacific Federal Credit Union.
"I look for their smile, their sincerity, what drives them in life," she said.
Busch said hot industries are retail and hospitality, that includes hotels, restaurants and tourism jobs. Low unemployment means less competition for job openings. Theoretically, it's easier to get hired.
Wilson hopes that's true.
"Get that break and get in somewhere," he said. "Get that experience, that marketable experience, that will give me a career.
Right now, he'd settle for a steady paycheck.