The $145 million WestStar Credit Union of Las Vegas is receiving wide community support–much more than expected–on a plan to host a special job fair next month on the campus of a local college.

The “Find a Job in Gaming” job fair to be held Jan. 11 at the College of Southern Nevada is distinctive among similar events since the CU is sponsoring the fair for free without charging participating firms for booth space.

“Other job fairs charge companies up to $1,000 for space plus costs for advertising but we are waiving any fee as long as the companies have jobs to offer,” explained Mona Joseph, assistant vice president of business development.

As often is the practice, companies use the job fair vehicle simply for local promotion purposes but have no jobs to offer, she said.

For the WestStar “Find a Job” fair, the combined number of jobs being offered has now hit 2,250 for both full and part time work including entry level and executive slots, Joseph added.

The job fair comes as Nevada still holds the unenviable distinction of having the nation’s highest unemployment rate–at 14.3%.

In hosting the job fair and looking at the number of unemployed members, WestStar managers thought “we can’t expect our members to apply for loans when they don’t have a job,” Joseph said. Her 26,000-member CU has long been one of the lead financial institutions serving casino employees in Las Vegas and Reno.

Joining as a participant in the job fair is Greenspan Media Group of Las Vegas which agreed to provide ad space in major Clark County publications. Flyers were also produced for the branches and ads for the websites, Joseph said.

“Every WCU department is on board to promote this event from the front line to the call center and even collections, making outbound calls telling those who are unemployed and delinquent on their loans about the job fair,” she added.

If the Jan. 11 fair is successful, there are plans to make it an annual event, Joseph said.