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Archive for the ‘Business’ Category

Seven of the eight St. Petersburg College students in the inaugural TBTF Exploratory Labs Boot Camp class. From left: Eric Romero II, Rafael Murga, Brenda Braitling, Robert Vigre, Giny Kapili, Rashidat Majekodunmi and Brian Little.

Seven of the eight St. Petersburg College students in the inaugural TBTF Exploratory Labs Boot Camp class. From left: Eric Romero II, Rafael Murga, Brenda Braitling, Robert Vigre, Giny Kapili, Rashidat Majekodunmi and Brian Little.

Eight St. Petersburg College students were among 22 who took part in the inaugural Tampa Bay Technology Forum Exploratory Labs, an innovative training solution held March 23-27 that addressed the needs of companies in the Tampa Bay area.

The training took place at local companies Tech Data and Valpak and was designed as a business integration experience that compliments traditional classroom curriculum. The goal: to close the skills gap and increase interest in the technology industry among non-technology degree seeking students.

Training program developers included Pat Gehant, Director of Workforce Initiative at TBTF; Angie Beltz, Vice President for Cisco Solutions Group at Tech Data; Dr. William Law, President of St. Petersburg College; the TBTF Workforce committee, then chaired by Chris Cate, CIO fro Valpak; and a team of educators from SPC and USF St. Petersburg. They worked together for 18 months to create a training solution that:

  • Engages business in the design and delivery of the curriculum
  • Integrates into the academic setting
  • Does not increase the cost or time to complete a degree
  • Provides a new way for companies to source entry level talent

The training consisted of 70 hours in the classroom and more than 40 hours of out-of-class team activities. The curriculum covered topics such as business planning, integrated marketing, emotional intelligence software licensing, Web, e-commerce, data centers, Agile project management methodologies, among others.

“Having an opportunity to solve a current technological challenge with the possibility of having our solution or parts of it utilized in the ‘real world’ is the best learning experience one could imagine,” said Christl Strachen, a student taking classes at SPC through the Tampa Bay Hi-Tech Training Program.

The students spent one day at Valpak learning how Agile methodologies are embraced and effectively deployed throughout a company – not just in Information Technology fields. The students are “chomping at the bit to get started,” said Robert Vigre, an SPC bachelor’s degree student in health administration.

The students graduated during a ceremony at Tech Data on April 14.

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Supply Chain Management Training

The orientation for the warehousing operations class at St. Petersburg College.

Responding to the demands of one of the fastest-growing industries nationwide, St. Petersburg College has launched the first two courses in its new LINCS Supply Chain Management training program.

The new six-week courses, Supply Chain Management Principles and Warehousing Operations, are the flagship classes of the non-credit program. The program will offer training in eight entry- to mid-level industry certifications to prepare workers to enter or advance in their supply chain careers.

Students will be able to earn industry certifications, endorsed by the national Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals (CSCMP), which cover several key aspects of supply chain management:

  • demand planning and forecasting
  • customer service
  • purchasing
  • product assembly
  • inventory management
  • storage
  • transportation

Students also will have the opportunity to enhance their career readiness skills and engage with industry professionals through guest lectures, networking events and industry tours. Nineteen students are enrolled in the program, which launched March 17. Additional courses in Customer Service Operations and Transportation Operations are slated to begin in May.

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FBLA-in-Digi-for-Awards-Ceremony-1024x593Seminole Campus hosted more than 300 Pinellas County middle and high schools students who participated in the 2015 Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA) District XII Competition on Friday, Jan. 30.

Students from 14 schools competed to showcase their skills as young business leaders on topics like entrepreneurship, digital media, computers and hospitality. This District Level Competition will send the top six of objective test events and the top two of performance events to the State Level Competition in Orlando this March.

FBLA is the largest and oldest student organization in the world, and provides its members with opportunities to network, travel and compete.

“The partnership between FBLA and SPC has developed over many years of participation in judging and as a result of their mutual support for education in the fields of business and entrepreneurship,” said Nicolle Panuthos, Academic Chair and Entrepreneurship Program Director for SPC’s College of Business. She has served as a judge in the Entrepreneurship and Global Business category for the last five years.

Other SPC faculty who served as judges this year include:

  • Delynda Keefe, Digital Design category
  • Shane Hamilton, Web Design and Desktop Application programming category

“We were able to showcase the college, our campus and provide information to a very sharp, engaged group of students, parents and teachers,” said James Olliver, Provost, SPC Seminole Campus.

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The Tampa Bay Beaches Chamber of Commerce is forming the new Tampa Bay Beaches Community and Business Institute in an effort to develop future government, business and civic leaders, the Beach Beacon reported.

The TBBC&BI is a six-month program leading to a certificate of completion and a one-year membership in the chamber. Candidates for the institute can include Eckerd College and SPC students, according to the article.

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SCORE is holding an entrepreneurs’ resource expo for veterans, their immediate family members and active military on Nov.10. The expo, where St. Petersburg College staff will also present educational seminars, is aimed at those who want to be self-employed or want to start or grow a business.

The expo is free to all veterans and their families.

Veteran and entrepreneur Mark Swanson will be the keynote speaker for the event that will be held at the event at the Hilton at Carillon starting at 10 a.m. Swanson also is a partner of the college’s Entrepreneurship Program.

SCORE is a national organization with 365 chapters around the country and more than 13,000 volunteers. The nonprofit association educates entrepreneurs and helps small businesses start, grow and succeed nationwide.

U.S. Small Business Administration survey data clearly indicates that about 40 to 60 percent of veterans think about being self-employed or starting a business. Most of them have no idea where to turn for guidance and assistance without cost to them nor do they know about the many ways to finance a business.

US Census data shows that, within Pinellas, Hillsborough, Sarasota/Manatee, Pasco/Hernando and Polk counties, there are more than 420,000 veterans. Approximately 117,000 are ages 18 to 54 and are prime candidates who at least think of self-employment.

SCORE’s goal is to reach out to veterans and encourage them to learn about available programs and free mentoring that can help them start up and grow their businesses. The organization has about 150 to 200 mentors in the Greater Tampa Bay area.

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St. Petersburg College’s Clearwater Campus was mentioned by the Tampa Tribune in a recent article about local artists and their efforts to make a living in the area.

An arts business program, called the Creative Pinellas Academy, was held at the campus during the summer, according to the article. It teaches things such as bookkeeping, branding, social media and other skills artists may need for their business.

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Rachel Smith, a Sustainability Management major in the College of Business at St. Petersburg College, is completing her internship at the city of St. Petersburg’s Water Resources.

“My internship is as an Environmental Specialist in the Industrial Pre-treatment program with the city of St. Petersburg. It is a very hands-on and technical position. I learned so much over the eight-week course about what goes into treating the city of St. Petersburg’s wastewater and the importance of what happens when you dump something down the drain.”

Read more about how Smith’s internship has shaped her future employment on the Internship Connection blog. Follow internship news at SPC on Twitter at #spcintern.

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