Archive for the ‘St. Petersburg College’ Category

The Florida TRADE Consortium and the Manufacturers Association of Florida Center for Advanced Manufacturing Excellence (MAF CAME) have joined forces to promote opportunities for women in manufacturing. The Manufacturing Experience: A Woman’s Perspective, was held on June 4, in Orlando. Key female executives and leaders in Florida manufacturing participated in a discussion on key issues for women in the manufacturing industry. Watch the event on YouTube.


Key female executives and leaders in Florida manufacturing participated in a discussion on issues for women in the manufacturing industry at the June 4 event – The Manufacturing Experience: A Woman’s Perspective.

“We always look for ways to improve our industry, promote manufacturing and introduce new career opportunities to our communities,” said Amanda Bowen, MAF CAME. “Along with the Florida TRADE Consortium, we decided to highlight exceptional women in the Florida manufacturing field at the June STEM Forum. The panel was nothing short of inspirational. Women of different backgrounds, cultures, generations and education engaged in an interactive dialogue to reach out and connect with other women.”

Jessica Glover, a manufacturer with Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems, sat on the panel. “Participating on the women in manufacturing panel at the STEM Forum was so much fun. We laughed, shared stories and brought a wide variety of backgrounds to a great discussion! Hopefully it will open young minds up to all the possibilities available in manufacturing, educate them on how to get there and break through some stereotypes.”

“These ladies rocked the house!” said Dr. Gary Graham, Director of the Florida TRADE Consortium. “They were engaging, very interesting and were the highlight of the STEM Forum. It was great to partner with the MAF Center to make this event happen. Our hope is that teachers, counselors and women of all ages use this video to learn about the careers and opportunities that are available in the manufacturing industry.”

“Approximately 75 percent of the current manufacturing industry is male,” said Bowen. “This is 2015. It’s time to break the mentality that manufacturing is ‘dark, dirty and dangerous’ and let everyone know it’s okay to follow your passion – even if that passion leads you down a road of science, technology, engineering or mathematics. Manufacturing careers are on the rise; with advances in technology, there is no end in sight for the opportunities in Florida’s future. Women have every right to be a part of this movement. We want girls in middle and high school to understand what manufacturing is and to take advantage of the trainings the TRADE Consortium has to offer. This industry is something to be proud of. It’s a place to grow personally and professionally. It’s a place where a passion can turn into a career, and as one of our panelists stated — ‘it’s lucrative!’”

For more information about MAF CAME, please visit www.MAFCenter.org. For information about the Florida TRADE Consortium, visit www.fltrade.org.

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From left: Dr. Marcie Biddleman, Executive Director, Juvenile Welfare Board; Dr. Bill Law, SPC President; Maria Edmonds, Chair, Juvenile Welfare Board; Robert J. Fine, Jr., Chairman, SPC Board of Trustees.

From left: Dr. Marcie Biddleman, Executive Director, Juvenile Welfare Board; Dr. Bill Law, SPC President; Maria Edmonds, Chair, Juvenile Welfare Board; Robert J. Fine, Jr., Chairman, SPC Board of Trustees.

At St. Petersburg College’s Board of Trustees meeting on Tuesday, June 16, officials from SPC and the Juvenile Welfare Board of Pinellas County announced a new partnership to strengthen training for early childcare professionals and better prepare young learners.

jwb-logoOfficials with SPC’s College of Education and the SPC Foundation worked with the Juvenile Welfare Board (JWB) to develop the partnership, in which JWB is providing $54,000 to fund 30 scholarships for students to earn certificates through the college’s Early Childhood Education program. The intent is to improve school readiness rates and close achievement gaps by preparing local childcare workers to provide high quality early childhood education.

“This is an excellent opportunity and excellent demonstration of partnerships that we have going,” said Dr. Marcie Biddleman, Executive Director, Juvenile Welfare Board. “It’s special because it’s St Petersburg College. We have a lot of children in our early learning programs, and they will not get to St Petersburg College for their education if we can’t get them started right. Hopefully this will be a continuation of educated citizens that will make a difference here in Pinellas County.”

Scholarships will be available for childcare workers currently working 20 hours or more in licensed early childcare centers (residential or commercial) in Pinellas County (as identified by JWB). The scholarships will fund up to 12 credit hours for classes taken on the Clearwater Campus, to prepare the students toward a certificate in early childcare development, with specializations in Infants and Toddlers or Preschool. Both 12-hour certificates can be counted toward SPC’s Early Childhood Education A.S. degree.

“The benefits and the value of this partnership will extend far beyond the student recipients, as they go back to their workplace and better prepare our earliest learners,” said Frances Neu, Executive Director, SPC Foundation. “Then we’ll see the real benefits,” she said.

Former SPC Associate Provost Maria Edmonds, who now chairs the Juvenile Welfare Board, called the agreement her dream.

“It is my pleasure that we have this collaboration,” Edmonds said. “We need more of these partnerships in our community. One individual or one organization alone cannot do it, but together we can do a lot.”

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International Film Festival: Henry & JuneSPC International Programs proudly presents the International Film Series screening of Henry & June (1990) on Thursday, June 25. This Academy Award nominated film brings literary art to life and provides a deeper understanding of famed writers Henry Miller, his wife June, and Anaïs Nin in 1930s Paris.

Shown in conjunction with the Leepa-Rattner Museum of Art exhibit, Henry and Abe: Finding America, the event will be held on the Tarpon Springs Campus in the Challenge of Modern Art Interactive Gallery. The doors open at 5:30 p.m., and the film screening begins at 6 p.m. The event is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be served.

Please note, this film has an NC-17 rating and no one 17 and under will be admitted.

For more information about the event, call 727-341-4732.

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Karen Kaufman White

Karen Kaufman White

After 31 years at SPC, Karen Kaufman White, Provost of the St. Petersburg/Gibbs Campus is retiring in July.

“I’ve had the good fortune to know Karen White since her first days at “SPJC.” She has always been a patient and focused educator, working on behalf of students and faculty, ready to take on new challenges,” said SPC President Dr. William Law. “Her early work to design and launch the Ethics Program at the College has proven to be a mark of distinction for all of us. Her work to lead our St. Petersburg/Gibbs Campus as a provost at the end of her career has similarly been a beacon of service and support for our students. We wish her well in the next phase of her life.”

Initially a high-school English teacher and later a civil trial lawyer, White joined SPC in 1984 as Dean of Open Campus, managing what was then the college’s largest campus. During that time she supervised the successful launch of the Applied Ethics Program, including a required course for all degree-seeking students, the first program of its kind in the U.S. Later, she was Instructor-in-charge of the Applied Ethics Department and an adjunct Applied Ethics Instructor.

“Every SPC graduate takes with them a gift from Dr. White in the skills that they learn in PHI 1600 Applied Ethics,” said Susan Demers, SPC Dean of Public Policy and Legal Studies. “Her hard work in crafting the original Applied Ethics course and the legacy of her leadership are the backbone of our department. Her passion for justice, attention to detail, and generous spirit make her the living exemplar of critical thinking applied to life. We will miss her and wish her the best but I hope she knows where home is!”

In 1999 she became the Coordinator for Project Eagle I, a large federal grant aimed at building a national model for increasing access to four-year degrees and workforce training for community college students.

She also served as Special Assistant to the President and Dean of International Programs prior to accepting the position of provost in 2008.

“One could not have scripted a professional journey that would bring more joy and satisfaction than the career that unfolded for me at St. Petersburg College,” said White. “I am forever grateful for the privilege of learning from and working with such wonderful colleagues in serving our community and helping our students succeed.”

Jamelle Conner has been named Provost of the St. Petersburg/Gibbs Campus.

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With the recent move by President Obama to normalize relations with Cuba, a door to economic opportunity has been opened to Tampa Bay business, cultural and educational interests. The Obama initiative has been praised by those who feel the embargo has been ineffective in advancing human rights for Cubans and, after 50 years, it’s time to try a new strategy. But others oppose any relaxation of the embargo until the Cuban government commits to human rights reform.

The implications of this policy will be debated by a panel of prominent local leaders at a forum sponsored by the Institute for Strategic Policy Solutions at St. Petersburg College and the Global Action Coalition. The forum, titled Cuba: Embargo or Not?, will be from 6-8 p.m. June 30 at the Poynter Institute, 801 Third St. S., St. Petersburg. Admission is free, but advance registration is requested.

Debating the pros and cons of easing the trade embargo will be:

  • Janet Long, Pinellas County Commissioner who led a local delegation on a good-will visit to Cuba last fall
  • Patrick Monteiga, Editor and Publisher of La Gaceta weekly newspaper in Tampa and frequent traveler to Cuba
  • Col. E.J. Otero, (U.S. Air Force, ret.) former senior officer at Central Command and Special Operations Command, MacDill Air Force Base
  • John Wilson, former anchor, Fox Channel 13, will serve as moderator.

Relaxing of the trade embargo offers a special opportunity for the Tampa Bay region, which has a rich history of relations with Cuba as well as airports and deep-water ports capable of handling increased trade with the island nation. Miami, which might be considered the natural hub for such commerce, is home to 850,000 Cuban exiles, many of whom strongly oppose easing of the embargo until political prisoners are released from Cuban jails and reparations for confiscated property are made.

For further information, call 727-394-6942.

The Institute for Strategic Policy Solutions at St. Petersburg College is a resource for academic enrichment, a non-partisan venue for civil, objective debate of topical public issues, and a center to promote better government. Its mission is to support a broad array of research, training, educational and policy analysis and support activities at the local, state, regional and national levels.

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alumni-skillsSt. Petersburg College alumni rank fifth in the nation and first in the state of Florida, among two-year colleges, for possessing the most valuable job skills, according to a recent report released by the Metropolitan Policy Program at the Brookings Institution, an independent, nonprofit think tank headquartered in Washington, D.C.

The study, entitled “Beyond College Rankings, a Value Added Approach to Assessing Two and Four Year Schools,” used data from multiple government and private data sources, including the Census Bureau, the U.S. Department of Education, LinkedIn, and Burning Glass, a labor market intelligence firm. The study explored the median mid-career salary, earning potential, and student loan repayment rates of graduates.

SPC ranked fifth for two-year colleges in skill sets that garner higher wages, as reported on LinkedIn. The professional social networking site has 99 million user profiles in the United States alone, and is one of many emerging websites that collects data on salary and skills, some with institutional detail for millions of graduates.

The value of alumni skills is reported under occupational earnings power and represents the labor market value of the 25 most common skills listed on the LinkedIn resumes of college graduates. These skills were matched with data, compiled by Burning Glass, on skills and salaries advertised in millions of job vacancies.

For SPC graduates, the value of alumni skills came in at $65,499 compared to a national average of $61,048 (for graduates of two-year colleges), while the SPC graduate median mid-career salary was $54,000 compared to the national average of $52,945 (for graduates of two-year colleges).

“At. St. Petersburg College, we are working very closely with our business partners in the Tampa Bay area to align our programs with workforce needs so our students are prepared to compete for high wage jobs when they graduate,” said St. Petersburg College President Bill Law. “Our number one goal at St. Petersburg College is helping improve our students’ lives, and increasing earning power is a surefire way to do that. This study helps validate those efforts to give our students the skills and tools they need to be successful in today’s job market.”

The Brookings report provides insight into how well colleges prepare students for high-paying careers and is the first to provide “value-added” measures for a broad range of two- and four-year colleges. The new data available helped the report authors develop new ways of measuring the economic value that U.S. colleges provide.

By using non-traditional tools and analyzing data on economic outcomes for graduates, the Brookings report moves beyond other college rankings by focusing on how well colleges contribute to student economic success, rather than simply their ability to attract top students and the preparedness of such students.

“These college-specific data can be used to learn about, evaluate, and improve college performance,” said Brookings Fellow Jonathan Rothwell, co-author of the report. “Colleges serve very diverse populations. The advantage of measuring value-added is that it adjusts a school’s ranking based on the type of college and the characteristics of its student body.”

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Beginning this fall, SPC will offer “Weekend College” on the Clearwater Campus. The program provides students the chance to earn an Associate in Arts or Associate in Science in Business Administration degree by taking classes entirely on the weekends.

The program can help those whose work or family responsibilities keep them too busy to attend classes during the week.

Info sessions for the new Weekend College program will be held from 10 to 11:30 on May 30 and July 11, on the Clearwater Campus, Room ES 104.

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