Education Connection Signature Event – The State of Education

The Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce held its annual Education Connection Signature Event on Tuesday morning at the University Club of Tampa.  This year’s event was presented by Suncoast Credit Union and Helios Education Foundation. More than 150 attendees learned about the current state of Hillsborough County Public Schools and our local area post-secondary institutions, where they want to be and how they will get there.  The discussion was moderated by Jeff Eakins, Superintendent of Hillsborough County Public Schools and the panelists included representatives from the healthcare, construction and information technology industries as well as a variety of academic institutions.

  • Kimberly Archuleta, online education industry expert and the CEO and founder of Avance Learning Solutions
  • Kenneth Atwater, president of Hillsborough Community College.
  • Randy Avent, founding president of Florida Polytechnic University
  • Allan Gladstone, senior project manager for The Whiting-Turner Contracting Company
  • Chris Karlo, partner at Mercury New Media
  • Charles Lambert, medical director of Florida Hospital Pepin Heart Institute and Dr Kiran C. Patel Research Institute as well as professor of medicine at the University of Florida

Superintendent Eakins started the programming portion of the event by sharing current Hillsborough County statistics, which ranged from workforce and jobs to early learning through postsecondary education.  He also shared the Florida Chamber of Commerce’s strategic blueprint, Florida 2030.  The vision is that Florida will create an integrated talent ecosystem to provide a sustainable, skilled workforce that ensures the current and future prosperity of Florida employers, employees, and residents.

The panelists stressed the importance of partnerships between our area’s educational institutions and the business community.  They discussed how industries such as healthcare and construction are always hiring and in desperate need of skilled workers. Without many qualified candidates from which to choose, hiring standards have suffered, and employers are experiencing a high volume of turnover.  Driven by necessity, companies are forced to adapt their hiring practices based on workforce issues.

Education Connection is a partnership that represents multiple business interests and educational institutions in Hillsborough County.  The mission is to develop workforce talent, advocate for innovative educational initiatives and inspire meaningful academic and business partnerships.  Join us on October 17th for our next Education Connection event, Bridging the Workforce of Today with the Workforce of Tomorrow.

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Get Involved: Education Connection Committee

Education Connection Podcast featuring Jennifer Lawson and Jeff Chernoff

The Education Connection Committee serves as a hub for educational and business partners to work together to ensure our workforce is prepared for tomorrow. They serve as a catalyst for change and work with the Chamber’s policy committee to advocate on behalf of innovative educational initiatives. In 2017, in conjunction with the Chamber’s Vision 2026, the committee significantly changed focus by addressing the gaps that exist in workforce development and workforce talent. The mission of the Education Connection Committee is to develop workforce talent, advocate for innovative educational initiatives and inspire meaningful academic and business partnerships.

Education Connection Committee Chair Jennifer Lawson and Vice Chair Jeff Chernoff are asking for volunteers from diverse industries to join the committee.  The goal is for the committee and programming to be reflective of the Tampa community.  While all industries are encouraged to participate, there is a critical need for the following:

  • Accommodation and Food Services
  • Arts, Entertainment, and Recreation
  • Construction
  • Government/Public Administration
  • Management of Companies and Enterprises
  • Manufacturing
  • Real Estate/Rental/Leasing
  • Transportation
  • Warehousing
  • Utilities
  • Wholesale Trade
  • Crop and Animal Protection
  • Mining, Quarrying, and Oil and Gas Extraction

Education Connection Podcast featuring Jennifer Lawson and Jeff Chernoff

Data-Driven Healthcare Education Roundtable Invitation

Data-Driven Healthcare Education Roundtable Discussion, May 18, 12:30p to 1:30p (lunch provided)

Dear Chamber Member,

The climate of healthcare is continually changing and having an impact right here in Tampa Bay.  Trends for 2017 include keeping an eye out on topics such as our nation’s healthcare delivery systems, insurance policy changes, data-driven healthcare education programs and healthcare industry needs. In a recent article, Liz Alton states employment opportunities in the health care industry are on the rise and estimated to grow over the next several years (Alton, 2017). The ADP Workforce Vitality Report Q4 2016 shows “healthcare industries exhibited a strong reading on the Workforce Vitality Index, a composite reading that takes into account wage growth, employment growth and other factors, increasing 5.6 percent year over year. This is ahead of a 4 percent growth trend of all industries combined.” (Alton, 2017).

Based on these findings, how do we fill the gaps and gain a better understanding of all of the changes that are affecting us locally and on a national level? Do local employers offer positions that are attractive and competitive compared to other cities within Florida? What trends do local employers, educators and healthcare experts see and estimate over the next several years? The need for these groups to collaborate is vital for our community. The question we need to address is, are our local graduates and those relocating to the Greater Tampa Bay area acquiring the skill-set to meet the demands in direct patient care, insurance and policy, and healthcare trends for 2017?

Please join the Greater Tampa Chamber’s Education Connection interactive and informal Healthcare Education discussion between healthcare and academic professionals.

The discussions will focus on:

  • Exploring workforce skill gaps health employers are facing
  • Expected changes and updates in healthcare delivery systems
  • Creating partnerships between educational institutions and healthcare providers to provide job-ready candidates
  • Changes in healthcare policy and how this impacts our community
  • Ensuring healthcare providers have skilled employees to meet their needs
  • Student opportunities available in Tampa Bay
  • Resources available to businesses from the academic community

Seats are limited to 10 Chamber member business participants and 10 academic participants, so reservations are on a first come basis.

To reserve your seat, please email cgeeabate@tampachamber.com.

 

Roundtable details: Wednesday, May 18, 12:30pm to 1:30pm (lunch provided, including vegan)

Location: Greater Tampa Chamber office, 201 N. Franklin Street, Suite 201

Parking: Short-term parking available on the 3rd floor of the Fort Brook parking garage.

From the parking garage, take the 3rd floor crosswalk to the Tampa City Center Building. The Chamber office is the first door on the right after the crosswalk.

Business Analytics Roundtable Invitation

Business Analytics Roundtable Discussion, April 12th, 12:30p to 1:30p (lunch provided)

Dear Chamber Member,

Business Analytics is at the core of organizational success. What is measured can be improved, but this industry is far more reaching than improvement within the organization. Analyzing data provides decision support to build strategies and it provides the accountability needed to prove effectiveness of programs and business practices. Business Analytics fits into the “Lean” methodology of Build, Measure, and Learn to validate or invalidate ideas.

Please join the Greater Tampa Chamber’s Education Connection interactive and informal Business Analytics discussion between business and academic professionals. This is ideal if you teach or are in the business of machine learning, data visualization, business intelligence, big data, and predictive analytics.

Discussions will focus on:

  • trends, issues, news, and directions in business analytics
  • what businesses need in workforce skills and capabilities
  • student opportunities available in Tampa
  • industry job descriptions
  • resources available to businesses from the academic community

Seats are limited to 10 Chamber member business participants and 10 academic participants, so reservations are on a first come basis.

To reserve your seat, please email cgeeabate@tampachamber.com.

 

Roundtable details: Wednesday, April 12th, 12:30pm to 1:30pm (lunch provided)

Location: Greater Tampa Chamber office, 201 N. Franklin Street, Suite 201

Parking: Short term parking available on the 3rd floor of the Fort Brook parking garage.

From the parking garage, take the 3rd floor crosswalk to the Tampa City Center Building. The Chamber office is the first door on the right after the crosswalk.

Building Business Success!

By Connie Gee-Abate, Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce

Here are two opportunities for you to enhance our community by building business success:

Opportunity #1

Internship 201 Workshop and Reverse Career Fair on Thursday, October 26th, 8:00am to 10:00am. The first part of the workshop is about taking Internship Programs to a more rewarding level for both the student and the organization. Interns are looking for more than just busy work – they are looking for an opportunity to positively contribute to the company and, in many cases, are hoping to get a feel for the company culture and what it would like to work there. At this workshop you will learn what a full company “experience” should be so your interns have a positive experience and become a positive brand advocate for you back at their college campus.

At 9:20am, Career Services Professionals from our local schools and universities will be set up at tables to talk with businesses about their programs. This helps businesses understand the talent factor in our community.

They will also talk about the Internship Programs they can help establish at the businesses. If you are looking for top talent, start early. Top talent begins looking for internship opportunities as early as the fall semester of their Freshman and Sophomore year. You will miss out on great talent and may have trouble finding the hires you need to help you with your workflow.

Career Services Professionals that will be on-site include Hillsborough Community College, Hillsborough County Public Schools, Saint Leo University, Stetson Law, The University of Tampa, and University of South Florida.

You can attend the Career Fair even if you do not attend the workshop, but registration is required in either case.

Click here to register.

 Opportunity #2

Applications for the Startup Scholars 2017 Cohort Group are now live on the Chamber website. http://www.tampachamber.com/Involvement/Innovation-Startup-School/Startup-Scholars-application.aspx

If you know of any new businesses/entrepreneurs who would be ideal candidates for this seven-month mentor program, you can refer them to the link above to complete an application.

The deadline to apply is October 31st.

Arts, Education, and Sports, What’s the Connection?

By Connie Gee-Abate, Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce

On Wednesday, August 24th, the Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce hosted the Education Connection annual signature breakfast, “Arts, Entertainment, and Sports, What’s the Connection?”, sponsored by Suncoast Credit Union. The event had a sell-out attendance of 220 chamber members from the business and academic communities who gathered to hear how the David A. Straz Jr. Center for the Performing Arts, Busch Gardens, and the Tampa Bay Lightning organizations partner with our local schools and universities to help develop Tampa’s local talent and provide opportunities that lead to jobs for many of our students.

Judy Lisi, CEO of the David A. Straz Jr. Center for the Performing Arts described their education programs as community builders, offering programs for ages two to eighty-two. The Straz Center has 30 partnership schools in Hillsborough County that build bridges to inspire artistic success by nurturing creativity and confidence in children. Many of the children receive scholarships to attend the programs offered by the accredited Patel Performing Arts Conservatory. The Straz Center also utilizes the talent of interns from numerous schools and are currently looking for more interns for all of their departments. Anyone interested can contact the human resources department at the Straz Center.

Jim Dean, President of Busch Gardens and Adventure Island had numerous success stories about the education programs offered at Busch Gardens. The organization partners with the Hillsborough Community College and the Hillsborough County Schools to provide mentorship and internship programs. Many leaders in the company today started out as interns “right out of high school” who worked hard and were recognized for all of their efforts through promotions. Mr. Dean even made a connection at the event with Dr. Jody Tompson from The University of Tampa, who runs the student Strategic Management Consulting Program for undergraduate and graduate students. Because of the connection made at the breakfast, students attending The University of Tampa will have an opportunity to conduct a study at Busch Gardens. Any student who may be looking for an internship in the entertainment industry can contact Busch Gardens human resources department.

Jeff Vinik, owner of the Tampa Bay Lightning and Tampa Bay Storm, proudly spoke of three major educational programs offered through his organization. Partnering with the University of South Florida, students are given experiential learning opportunities through a residency program that was started by a student. USF students who study Sports Management work directly with the sports teams. There is also an internal training program for employees, where USF guides ten Lightning Leader Employees” through a series of on-site speaker presentations. The third program is the “Community Hockey Team”, a partnership with Hillsborough County Schools that intends to teach 100,000 students over the next 5 years by combining the fun of hockey with science and math skills.

At the conclusion everyone could agree that the connection between education and the arts, entertainment, and sports industries have a major impact upon our community. Creativity, innovation, and jobs are developed through the support of organizations such as the David A. Straz Jr. Center for the Performing Arts, Busch Gardens, and the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Tampa Bay Storm. Our community thanks Judy Lisi, Jim Dean, and Jeff Vinik for supporting education and leading the way to a better tomorrow for our local students who are the workforce of tomorrow.

Talent Management Best Practices Takeaways

By Connie Gee-Abate, Strategic Initiatives, Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce

The Chamber’s Education Connection program, “Talent Management Best Practices” was a huge success with over 60 people in attendance. Chamber members participated in conversations with academic career services professionals and business recruiters to share what has worked best with preparing students and businesses for the hiring and on-boarding process. Some of the valuable takeaway information included:

  1. Create a consistent campus presence by attending campus events and inviting academic career professionals to your company to get to know the organizational workforce needs
  2. Use alumni associations and student organizations and clubs as a communication channel for reaching future candidates
  3. Communicate the organizational culture and potential career path to new hire prospects early on in the hiring process; the new workforce wants to know potential professional growth up front. An employer’s involvement in the community is also important to the new workforce
  4. Create internal “Ambassador Programs” to help with the on-boarding process; mentors and coaches are extremely successful with acclimating interns and new hires to the organizational expectations and culture

A Reverse Career Fair followed the panel discussions, giving Chamber members an opportunity to personally meet with career professionals from Hillsborough Community College, Hillsborough County Public Schools, Saint Leo University, Stetson University College of Law, The University of Tampa, and the University of South Florida.

The Talent Management Best Practices event will be repeated in 2017, with a focus on training and career development as employer retention tools. If you would like to be added to the distribution list to be personally alerted about this next event, please email cgeeabate@tampachamber.com.

You can also let us know your interests by completing the Education Connection Inquiry form at www.tampachamber.com/ec.

Education Connection is a commitment among the Chamber, its academic partners, and the business community to develop and keep our local talent. More information is available on the Chamber website.