Former U.S. ambassador seeking diverse applicants at Newark recruiting event

By Jessica Mazzola | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com
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on September 16, 2014

Arnold Chacon, the former Ambassador to Guatemala, will be in Newark for a networking event Thursday.

 

NEWARK — Representatives of the U.S. Department of State will be in the state's largest city Thursday night in an effort to find qualified, diversified job candidates from New Jersey. Fresh off a tour of similar events in cities around the country, the department is hosting a Careers in Foreign Affairs Networking event from 5:30 to 8 p.m. at the Hilton Newark Penn Station. This will mark the first time it is hosting this type of event in Newark.

“We are looking for diverse candidates. We want to make sure that our staff at home and abroad actually reflects the population of the U.S.,” Ana Escrogima, the Diplomat in Residence for the NJ region who recruits at local colleges, said.

“This will be an opportunity for professionals who may be interested in a career in foreign affairs to listen to people who can actually speak to their experiences.”

The event is set to feature a panel of foreign and civil service officers, including Arnold Chacon, the former Ambassador to Guatemala and President Barack Obama’s nominee to be the next Director General of the Foreign Service and Director of Human Resources at the Department of State.

Chacon served as the country's ambassador to Guatemala from 2011 to this year, and has worked various foreign service posts in Honduras, Mexico, Chile, Italy, Peru, Ecuador, and Spain throughout his career.

“Coming to Newark will give us the opportunity to reach out to a diverse population,” Chacon said, noting that the Department of State is looking for diversity in terms of race, ethnic origin, gender, sexual orientation, economic and social background, languages spoken, and more.

According to department statistics, diversity within its workforce is on the rise. Though representatives said the actual number of employees has fluctuated over the years, they say women have gone from representing 28 to 35 percent of the department’s workforce over the past 30 years, and minorities from 10 to 20 percent.

“We are [looking to recruit] in places with a high population of minorities with bachelor’s degrees or higher,” Chacon said.

“We are coming to New Jersey to reach out to the diverse population that’s here.”
By Monday afternoon, the department already had 340 people signed up to attend the event.

Anyone interested in attended should RSVP here.

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