All posts by Cathi Carr

JPMorgan Chase grant develops technology talent

JP Morgan Chase and Co. Logo

Training the Tampa Bay workforce for jobs in the nation’s second-fastest growing technology hub will get a boost thanks to a $250,000 grant from JPMorgan Chase.

Through the grant, St. Petersburg College will partner with the Tampa Bay Technology Forum (TBTF) to serve 125 students and 100 employers the first year and:

  • provide online and classroom technology training
  • create a database of support tools
  • develop a website that links students and educators directly to local employers looking to fill open positions
  • support the expansion of an intensive, technology skills training boot camp developed by local companies.

“This project is a true example of how education, industry and workforce can come together as a workforce ecosystem to address the critical challenge most industries face – finding and retaining top talent,” said Dr. Tonjua Williams, President of St. Petersburg College. “We are grateful to JPMorgan Chase for their investment in expanding strategies that are showing promise in overcoming this challenge.”

“As the nation’s second-fastest growing technology hub, life-changing careers are being created in Tampa Bay daily,” said Daniel James Scott, CEO of the Tampa Bay Technology Forum. “This partnership will allow our region to match employees with both training and employers that will allow them to take full advantage of these careers.”

“Tampa Bay is clearly becoming the state’s largest technology hub and our partnership with St. Petersburg College will help local residents have long, successful careers right here at home,” said Clay Schnelker, Executive Director, Banking Technology at JPMorgan Chase.

New Skills at Work

This grant is a part of JPMorgan Chase’s $325 million global initiative, New Skills at Work, that helps people develop skills to compete for high-wage jobs and strengthen the economy. A recent report funded through this project found that Tampa Bay is uniquely positioned to take advantage of the one million plus students in higher education within a half-day drive radius.

NSAW staff will be presenting a workshop on “Beyond Networking – Building Relationships” at the Tech Career Summit to be held Oct. 18 beginning at 5:30 p.m. on SPC’s St. Petersburg/Gibbs Campus in the Student Services building.

An orientation for the program will be held on Oct. 24 at 5:30 p.m. on SPC’s St. Petersburg/Gibbs Campus in SA114.  Students interested in attending must register by texting their name to 727-619-4SPC. (4772)

Advisory committee helps SPC connect with local needs

IT advisory committee

St. Petersburg College’s Technology Advisory Committee helps students succeed by working with the college to maintain an industry-centered curriculum that keeps up with the rapid changes in today’s IT industry.

The advisory committee is made of professionals within the community that provide oversight and ensure our programs remain relevant and effective. Through these committees, SPC’s programs are effective in meeting the professional and employment needs of our area.

In addition to the input from each advisory committee, SPC professors attend professional conferences, and the college hosts employer events and job fairs that help SPC connect with industry leaders.

Meet Chris Paul – Melitta North America

Chris Paul is the manager of information systems for Melitta North America, a distributor of
coffee, filters and non-electric coffee systems headquartered in Clearwater. He also chairs the Advisory Committee for SPC’s College of Computer and Information Technology. In that role, Chris enjoys sharing his experience and what he has learned in his career.

“Quite honestly, I see it as a professional responsibility,” Chris said. “I mean you’ve learned
things. You now have skills and experiences that you can use to guide students in their own career paths.”

He also sees the benefits to the local companies that serve on an advisory committee.

“Our companies also benefit in that local industry also has the availability of talent they need to keep their doors open,” Chris added.

Meet Mayra Harley – Reservec, Inc.

Mayra Harley is the CEO of Reservec Inc., a total management and online reservation system for the recreation industry.  Also a member of the Advisory Committee for SPC’s College of Computer and Information Technology, Harley and other advisory board members help provide strategies and guidance to help SPC stay connected to today’s IT workforce needs.

“You help the college guide their academic efforts,” Harley said. “And at the same time you help a student or a new professional in the community get their first job and that is a great feeling in and of itself.”

Advisory committee helps students succeed

SPC’s technology Advisory Committee meets twice a year to keep the focus on students by helping develop the academic programs necessary for their success in the workplace. Committee members also assist in finding the right contacts within the employment community so students keep the end goal in mind – their careers.

For example, the technology program often hosts career events, where local employers visit the college to discuss career and internship options with students.

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