My turn: Innovate NC talks economic opportunities

North Carolina's unemployment rate hovered in the same spot for a fifth month in February....
North Carolina's unemployment rate hovered in the same spot for a fifth month in February. (Source: Raycom Media)
Published: Apr. 12, 2016 at 3:09 PM EDT|Updated: Apr. 15, 2016 at 2:43 PM EDT
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WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - It's an exciting time to live in southeastern North Carolina. This week, the statewide project Innovate NC is making its home in Wilmington to discuss economic opportunities that could be realized in this part of the state.

Our news team covered one of the events earlier this week and the director of one of the locations in Wilmington made a good point. They said people need to start thinking about Wilmington in a new way and not just as a tourism location.

And that's one of the big hurdles. This is a fantastic place to live, but I often hear from people who say it's hard to find a good job. For as long as I've lived here, I've heard people talk about that problem. I am aware that jobs aren't created overnight. And I'm confident most of our leaders are working tirelessly to make those opportunities happen.

But that's going to be the monkey that Wilmington has to get off its back in order to move to a new level of success.  I'm hopeful the work taking place this week will help put us in a position to make some of those jobs possibilities come to fruition.

That's my turn. Now it's your turn. To comment on this segment, or anything else, email me at

Emailed comments from viewers:

I've emailed before about the jobs in the cape fear.  Its not that jobs don't exist here because they do.  You can go on any job search website and see hundreds of them pop up.  But is people like myself with college degrees that never get the opportunities.  We are told go to college get a degree to make a better life for yourself.  My husband and I tell our kids the same thing.  But then we worry  are they going to have to go through the same.  There are big name companies in Wilmington like PPD that have openings but you never get called for a job interview.  Then you got big UNCW that you can fill out application after application and never get called for an interview.   This is what causes a lot of people to leave the Cape Fear area and go elsewhere so they can get jobs or better jobs.  I have a Masters and have applied to I know over 100 plus jobs and don't receive interviews.  And the interviews I do get in Wilmington are only formality interviews.  I've been on interviews that wasted my time.  Sitting there and never asked the first question they talking about they have different food trucks that come in.  I use to think maybe its because I'm black and have a Master's that I'm being over looked, but the more I talked to other people its not all a race thing. If Wilmington don't take the initiative in giving people opportunities, more and more people are going to move.  And its not just the two companies I listed its a bunch more.  I can give you a list of them.  I've talked with a Commissioner about the job situation and its a whatever situation.  This is just my opinion on this.

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