A look at the local business climate

It’s no secret that recent economic woes have lead to layoffs, both here locally and around the country. There is another side to the story because companies are hiring despite the slowing times.

When the economy experiences a downturn, many people pass up the extras to save a few dollars. We all still have to purchase the necessities, like electricity. Businesses like progress energy are still prospering.

Progress Energy is filling vacancies in all positions, and is searching in particular for operating workers for the Brunswick nuclear power plant.

The local schools like Cape Fear Community College are pitching in to help fill nuclear power vacancies. “Colleges are ramping up their nuclear engineering program and utilities are ramping up their hiring,” said Drew Elliot, a Progress Energy spokesperson.

Another large local company still running strong is Corning, the optic fiber plant. Cornings Vice President said the demand is still present. “We support customers from across the world in this facility. The global economy hasn’t been as impacted as much as it has in North America so we continue to see good demand from our customers.”

Corning has hired around 1,000 employees at its Wilmington location and is still growing.

UNC Wilmington also hires hundreds of employees, and as of Monday, has no plans on laying off workers or increasing tuition to meet state budget requirements.