Only 80,000 jobs were created in June leaving the nation's unemployment rate the same at 8.2% unemployment improved slightly in our region last month.
Mel Kruse worked as a mortgage loan officer. He's struggled to find work since being laid off in 2008. He says small improvements in Rockford's numbers only cover up what he calls a stagnant job market.
"Since 2008 I haven't had one interview at one bank."
Mel Kruse says over the past four years he's applied for hundreds of jobs. Some outside of banking and still been turned down.
"Sometimes you might apply for a job and they tell you, you're overqualified. That's not a good thing. If you need money, you need a job, and you hope you'd at least be given that opportunity."
While the numbers may not add up for everyone, the Rockford metro area's statistics are better. The most current figures we have are for may and that rate is down .9 from the year before. But some people say that doesn't count the number of people who've quit looking. Don't put Kruse in that category. He's committed to finding a job. His focus now is making his resume stand out in a crowd.
"At this point in my life I have to restructure resumes in a manner in which it would be more appealing to people in other lines of work, so it's not just a one track kind of resume. You have to appeal to what's out there."
While he hasn't found work doing what he wants, Kruse now rents properties he bought when he had a job and earns a living as a landlord. But he still hasn't given up on a return to his former career even if it means expanding his skill set.
"I tried to go back and use the degree that I have and it didn't go very well because I never attempted to use it and had no experience with the college education."
According to the Illinois Department of Employment Security. The state of Illinois' unemployment rate is declining, but it is still higher than the national average.
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