Get a job

One hour after I post this you could be attending the Capital Ex Job Fair.

By 7pm you’ll be too late.

Yes, Capital Ex will be taking over Northlands again this July, and they need staff. So, if you want to work only 10 days, this is the job for you.

I’m probably kidding, since people who only want to work 10 days likely aren’t going to be at the top of the resume pile for Northlands. I hope. I mean, I demand quality and a smile from my mini donut vendors.

Anyway, the job fair goes 5-7 tonight, and is a chance for you to drop off your resume and get a short pre-interview interview.

It could be a good summer job for your kids too, as long as they’re 15-years-old. And like smelling like mini donuts.

Careers: Val Cox, Val Cox Graphics

[Did you guys know there’s a recession?! JK, of course you did. That’s my clever segue, so that I can talk to you about JOBS.

Do you like what you do for a living? If you do, that’s great. Well done! Hats off to you! If you don’t, don’t sweat it, because you’re pretty much guaranteed to not be doing it forever. The days of working at one company until you retire are over and done, and as the economy struggles back to life, layoffs are becoming much more commonplace. And you know what they say, when God gives you lemons, find a new God.

We here at the edmontonian are big believers in making your own luck – so whether you’re recently fired or merely wishing that you would be, take heart. Even if you don’t know where you’re headed, you’re merely biding your time until you get the call from the mothership. So we are pleased to present the first of many stories of folks who’ve managed to find career paths that interest, challenge and excite them, reminding us all that a better opportunity is just around the corner. It’s like John Cusack once said on Inside the Actors’ Studio: “the minute you realize that your options are unlimited, things just start falling into place all around you.”]

Val Cox, Age 35/Owner, Val Cox Graphics

Formerly an award-winning Graphic Artist for CHUM TV; Now self-employed


She’s an entrepreneurial success story now, but rewind just one year, and Val Cox was feeling the sting of being freshly laid off. After spending 3 years working as a full-time designer for now-defunct CHUM television – where she won two consecutive Promax BDA Awards and designed graphics for Citytv, Access, Court TV and more – Val became of a victim of corporate media acquisitions and what she calls the “inevitable slow and steady layoffs” that followed.

“It was like walking a plank,” she says of the work environment leading up to her unemployment. “Nobody knew when they’d be kicked off.”

Val says that ultimately it came as a relief to find out she was out of a job. “By the time it came, I embraced it fully.”

After spending a few months weighing her options, Val registered in a government sponsored self-employment starter course, learning the ins and outs of setting up her own design shop. “It was doing everything the right way,” she says,”as well as writing the business plan.”

Today, Val says an average day begins with her doing a lot of follow up e-mailingvalcoxgraphics and networking; something she would’ve found intimidating in the past.

“When I first started the [self-employment] course, we’d have speakers come in and talk to the class, and we’d have to talk to them about ourselves. It was scary,” she says. “But that’s a big part of building business – selling yourself.”

Val now returns to the same classroom on a regular basis, this time as a speaker herself. She’s part of a permanent roster of guest speakers, which means she gets to help other people overcome their fears as well.

She adds that she’s come to “really enjoy the schmoozing aspect” of business.

This hasn’t been the first time Val’s taken a run at setting up her own business, but it was the first time she dove in wholeheartedly. “I would’ve said to myself [in the past], ‘I’ll never be able to do that. I need a steady paycheque.'”

So much for that. Now busy as can be, Val juggles a variety of clients, is developing her own set of tarot cards, and is currently in negotiations with a US book publisher to illustrate and layout a series of “paranormal romance” novels for young adults set to come out in 2010.

“My favorite piece of advice is ‘Fortune favours the bold,'” she laughs. “Somebody’s going to do it. Why shouldn’t it be you?”