Dr. Kevin Gordon, provost of St. Petersburg College’s Downtown and Midtown centers, welcomed more than 40 local businesses to the Downtown Center for an internship workshop in June.
“Internships create economic development for our students,” said Gordon.
The St. Pete Chamber of Commerce Grow Smarter Workshop: Internship was sponsored by Duke Energy, Destination Better and Bite.
The workshop focused on economic inclusiveness through internships and how to meet the needs of the workforce through partnerships with educational institutions.
St. Pete Chamber of Commerce member and Vice Chair of Grow Smarter Ryan Griffin reminded the internship workshop attendees the importance of collaborating with local educational institutions.
“The number one driver for smart economic growth is through our educational systems, like SPC, Eckerd, and USFSP,” said Griffin. “We cannot claim success until everyone is a part of it.”
The mission for the workshop was to develop a sustainable program that creates a streamlined process and links local university and college students with intern positions at Chamber member businesses.
The workshop was led by:
- Jacob Wortock, SPC Workforce and Internship Coordinator
- Melena Postolowski, Eckerd College Director of Internships and Employer Relations
- Amanda Peters, University of South Florida St. Petersburg Employer Relations Coordinator
Also at the workshop, a panel of business leaders gave personal insight on developing an internship program. The panel speakers included:
- Tarah Harkins, Director of Campus Recruiting and Pipeline Development at Raymond James
- Alicia Branon, Recruitment Program Manager at Southwest Florida Water Management District
- Ryan McNulty, Talent Acquisition Partner/Campus Relations at Tech Data
SPC Internship Program
The college connects students with businesses that can provide valuable work experiences that can prepare them for their chosen profession. Active learning opportunities like internships are critical to student success.
SPC allows employers to post ads for internships as well as job opportunities so businesses can find the perfect employee or intern. More information is available on the college’s website or contact email@example.com or 727-341-3019.
Meet a few of St. Petersburg College’s graduates and see the career paths they’ve taken seen earning degrees at the college.
After earning his Veterinary Technology Associate in Science degree and a general Associate in Arts degree in Fall 2015, Richard Quartararo is looking forward to the options his bachelor’s degree in Veterinary Technology will give him. “My passion is the clinical side, but I would love to open my own clinic,” Quartararo said. “With this degree, I can also give back in the way of teaching.”
Rayford Dennis earned his Associate in Arts degree and an Associate in Science in Human Services with a concentration in substance abuse in 2013. He transferred to the University of South Florida’s Social Work program, where he will graduate this summer. He currently works at the Veteran’s Administration assisting homeless veterans. “SPC will always be special to me because it was a turning point in my life,” Dennis said. “It was the foundation upon which I built my career, and it gave me all the necessary tools to succeed with the transformation of my life.”
2012 SPC Graduate Deniann Grant was chosen this year as a finalist for Teach for America’s Sue Lehmann Teaching and Learning Fellowship. This summer, Grant begins a new phase of her career as a manager in Teach for America’s Teacher Leadership Development program in Miami-Dade. She will move from the classroom into a mentor/coach role, where she will advise teachers and collect data on the effectiveness of their efforts. “Because I had people believe in me at SPC, I was always involved in leadership training,” she said. “When I think about my identity and how I interact with people and other professionals, I realize that I learned the gist of that at St. Petersburg College.”
As a project manager for Merge Healthcare, Sarah Rawdon works with people all over the world. She earned her Health Services Administration Bachelor of Applied Science degree and Healthcare Informatics Certificate from St. Petersburg College completely online, and she now manages the process of computer upgrades for radiology departments. “The informatics certificate program I took was really awesome,” she said. “SPC really helped me with time management, and the curriculum was always relevant to industry needs.”