Before sunrise Monday, Kevin and Shelley Taylor set out from their Millersville home to a new employment center for the Maryland Live! Casino, a slots parlor next to the Arundel Mills mall seeking workers for 1,500 jobs.
Having tracked the progress of what will be the state's largest casino, the Taylors believe the facility could provide opportunity for their five-member family. Though Kevin Taylor has a job, he wants a better-paying one. And Shelley Taylor has been out of work for several months.
"With a mortgage and medical bills coming up, one job isn't cutting it," said Shelley Taylor, who most recently worked in home health care and was hoping to land a job in hospitality or other services. "This will bring extra jobs in the county. It will open doors for everyone."
The center, nestled in a Hanover business park a few miles from the mall, drew a wide swath of job-seekers on its first day Monday: those unemployed for many months; college students seeking part-time work; and some who want to switch careers.
Patricia Stone said she has been working as a receiving clerk for a food and beverage company for seven years and wants to try something different.
"I'm not the person to sit behind a desk all day," said Stone, 56, of Savage, who was waiting with a friend to talk to a company representative. "I like talking to people. I'm outgoing."
More than 50 people were in line by the time the center opened at 10 a.m. Job-seekers filled out online applications at one of the 25 computers at the center.
While candidates can apply online at home, casino officials said stopping by the center provides opportunities to find out more about jobs, ask questions and get some face time with human resources officials.
Robert J. Norton, the casino's general manager, said the slots parlor expects to hire from now until the facility's opening in June. The casino will open with 3,000 machines; the remaining 1,750 will be available by the end of the year.
Job openings range from casino floor positions to marketing, food service, security, information technology and finance.
"Many of the jobs don't require casino experience," said Norton, adding that many of the jobs are expected to be filled by residents of Anne Arundel County and other nearby areas. "What they require is a dedication to work, having fun and customer service."
Angela Hodge-Jones, a job developer at the Community College of Baltimore County, came out to scout employment opportunities for the people she helps through Job Network, a training program that helps Baltimore County residents on government assistance.
Hodge-Jones said she hopes the casino's job prospects are just as successful as Arundel Mills, which employed many of her clients when the mall opened a decade ago.
The employment center will be open at 7270 Park Circle Drive in Hanover Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 7 a.m. For questions, call 443-445-2500. For online applications, go to jobsatmarylandlivecasino.comCopyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun