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WDAY: The News Leader

Published April 25, 2014, 06:01 PM

North Dakota: A land of opportunities

Fargo, ND (WDAY TV) - Workers are flocking out West to work in the oil fields. Meanwhile another industry is booming across North Dakota and employers are struggling to hire enough workers to keep up.

By: Catherine Ross , WDAY

Fargo, ND (WDAY TV) - Workers are flocking out West to work in the oil fields. Meanwhile another industry is booming across North Dakota and employers are struggling to hire enough workers to keep up.

Ken Boone loves his job.

Ken Boone/Carpenter: “It's a great field and I could never sit at a desk and do a desk job. It's a great thing for people who are highly active to get into and excel at.”

And construction companies are looking for folks like him.

Boone hails from St. Louis, Missouri, but saw bigger carpentry opportunities in the Dakotas.

Boone: “There's good job security. There are times. It all depends on the economy.”

And North Dakota's booming economy means opportunities are plenty.

Darrell Miller/ Business Agent, Operating Engineers: “Right now we don't have enough workers to anticipate the need that's coming up.”

There are literally thousands of openings and many are right here at home.

Jason Ehlert/President, North Dakota Builders & Trades Council: “Many people don't realize over here on the Eastern side of the state, things have been booming the whole time while they're here.”

Construction work doesn't just have to be about power tools and getting dirty. Here in town the industry is offering a variety of jobs for a variety of skills.

Darrell Miller/ Business Agent, Operating Engineers: “We're looking for anybody from kids coming out to high school that are looking for a career. If they've never sat in a piece of equipment before, that's fine. We will train them, women, the guys in the military.”

And the benefits are good.

Boone: “Compared to a desk job. The security might not also be as good, but the pay is better.”

Ehlert: “To get a job anywhere is pretty easy. But to get a career where you're going to get health insurance, retirement benefits, satisfaction at a job well done. That's what we're looking at.”

And the approaching summer months mean even more positions to fill.

Ehlert: “We want to tell you that we're here. We're looking to hire.”

Starting pay is between $18 to $20 per hour.

Friday until 8 trade groups are offering a career fair at the Kelly Inn in Fargo and again from 10 to 4 Saturday.

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