Message from the President

It’s hard to believe that my term as your President will be over in a week. It’s been a year full of both challenges and triumphs and as an association we are continuing to ride the wave of momentum that was built after our formal name change in 2014 from FCPA to FloridaACE. It’s an exciting time to be part of this incredible organization and I wouldn’t trade my experience on the FloridaACE Board for anything.

If you are attending the FloridaACE Annual Conference next week, the conference planning committees have been working hard to ensure that your experience is absolutely amazing! You can take a look at the online version of our Conference Program on the website, along with a Schedule-at-a-Glance. I also recommend downloading the FloridaACE Conference Plus app, provided this year courtesy of Career Fair Plus. You can find it on the App and Play stores.

If you have not registered for the conference yet, there is still a limited amount of time. You can either register for the full conference, Thursday only, or buy tickets to attend the FloridaACE Enterprise Closing Banquet & After Party. You can also follow along with us from home through the app and by following the #FloridaACE17 hashtag on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

Since our first Drive-In Conference was such a success, we will be doing it again this year. The 2017 Drive-In Conference will be held on November 3rd in the Florida State University Career Center. More details to come in the weeks and months ahead.

The Board accomplished many great things over the past year and met all of the goals we set out to achieve. The most exciting of these is that we were able to increase employer membership by 80%. Welcome to the new companies that are now part of the FloridaACE family: ADP, AFLAC, American Traveler, Ellucian, Ernst & Young, Fastenal, Florida Hospital, PwC, and WellCare Health Plans! We are also grateful to our longtime employer members and I would be remiss if I didn’t give a huge shout out to our top-tier conference sponsor, Enterprise Holdings.

As I transition into the role of Past President, I want to thank our board members who are rolling off the board for their service and dedication to FloridaACE: Adam DeRosa, Robin Kazmarek, Rob Liddell, Carla Toles McKinney, and Kim Franklin. We also have some members who went above and beyond this year in big ways, including Tara Stevenson, Stacy Lanigan, Stacy Ballinger, Matina Wagner, Bill Blank, and Megan Hollis.

It has been a sincere honor to serve as this year’s FloridaACE President. I am confident that you will love the energy of the 2017-18 Board and you can expect great things to come in the year ahead. I hope you will engage with us and help us keep the momentum going into the future by volunteering to serve on committees, presenting at professional development events, and contributing to the blog with your best practices.

I hope to see you next week at Saddlebrook Resort & Spa! If you have any questions about the conference, please reach out to me or our Vice President and Conference Chair, Rob Liddell.

Most sincerely,

Alicia Smyth
2016-17 President
Florida Association of Colleges & Employers
President@Florida-ACE.org

 

 

FloridaACE Annual Conference Closing Session Announcement

The FloridaACE Annual Conference Planning Committee is also pleased to announce our closing/concluding session experience.

I know when you refer to something as an “experience”, you are either unsure of how to categorize it or you are comfortable with the expectations that follow the term. In this case, it is the second.

Competency development is a hot topic in national circles, and for good reason – it equips students for success after graduation.  In order to integrate competencies into curricular and co-curricular activities, schools need employer input into competency identification, campus-wide buy-in, a comprehensive plan, and a multi-year commitment to infuse competencies into student learning.

To equip our membership, the Professional Development Committee has developed Building Bridges for Student Success: University-wide Competency Development and sourced several key architects of this movement to facilitate a memorable learning session.

Neil and Tim will be joined by colleagues to provide an overview of the Clemson University and the University of Tampa journey toward competency development and focus on a few universal pillars discovered along the way.

Clemson University is a science- and engineering-oriented college serving more than 17,000 students in upstate South Carolina. Students choose from more than 80 majors, 75 minors, and more than 110 graduate degree programs. Clemson brags on their 2 Rhodes Scholar Finalists, 11 NSF Graduate Research Fellows, 4 Fulbright Scholars, and a 91% freshman retention rate. The Tigers are celebrating their 2016 College Football National Championship-returning to Tampa where they won the hardware.

The University of Tampa is a comprehensive private college serving more than 8,000 students in downtown Tampa. Recognizing the substantial, innovative progress towards comprehensive internationalization, UT was awarded the 2016 Senator Paul Simon Award for Comprehensive Internationalization by NAFSA: Association of International Educators. The Spartans can claim 15 NCAA Division II National Championships in five sports and 59 Sunshine State Conference titles.

This interactive session will allow schools to draft institution-specific plans, and encourage employers to identify and share beneficial shifts in curricula and practices.

All participants will leave with tools, plans, and ideas that are specifically applicable to their organizations and institutions.

Not registered for #FloridaACE17 yet??  Complete your registration today!

FloridaACE Annual Conference Opening Session Announcement

 

The Florida ACE Annual Conference Planning Committee is pleased to announce our opening session panel.

In recent years we have heard a consistent message from our membership and Conference participants: “We’d benefit from more interaction with employers.”

To respond to this feedback, the Professional Development Committee has developed a panel presentation entitled Bridges to Employment: Leveraging Competencies in Recruitment and Retention.

 

conference opening

During the opening session, our panelists will describe several of the strategies and practices used to:

  • Cultivate relationships with talent,
  • Orient applicants through their recruitment funnel,
  • Determine likelihood of candidate success, and
  • Offer feedback to their career services colleagues on student preparedness.

Recruiting, like other processes, gives off a lot of data. Our panelists will share ways in which they are designing “organic” systems capable of learning and adaptation over time.

Lastly, we’ll put our panelists under the bright lights and ask them about what works for them in terms of recruiting college students and what career centers might consider revising to strengthen the partnership.

Our Conference Chair and Vice President, Rob Liddell, will be moderating this panel. If you have a specific question or topic you would like considered/included, please e-mail him at Robert-Liddell@utc.edu

Be sure to join us in Pegasus South at 1 p.m. on Wednesday, June 14th for this insightful presentation.

Not registered for #FloridaACE17 yet?  Complete your registration today!

UWF sees positive results with the “College Liaison Model”

CareerServices_Primary_Blue_CMYK

Jennifer Hill M.P.A. M.Ed., University of West Florida

Career Services at the University of West Florida has utilized its College Liaison Model in a unique way this year.  Each Liaison has planned and executed a “Career Road Trip” to a local employer related to the majors in their college. These trips take approximately 25 students to a local employer and consist of a behind-the-scenes tour, talks on what a typical day looks like, career advice for students, and conclude with a networking session.
uwf
The students sign-up to attend the free event and complete an online learning module that includes developing a One-Minute Commercial to assist them with networking at the event. Students are provided lunch by either Career Services or the Employer and provided transportation to the event by Career Services.

All UWF students/alumni are invited to attend the event, however seats are limited and available on a first-come, first-served basis.  A waitlist is also available when the available seats are filled and empty seats are offered to those on the waitlist through the morning of the event itself (in the case of no-shows).

Locations included:

  • Enterprise Rent-a-Car (College of Business)
  • Pensacola Blue Wahoos Stadium (College of Education and Professional Studies)
  • Navy Federal Credit Union (Hal Marcus College of Science and Engineering)
  • Andrew’s Institute for Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine (Usha Kundu, MD College of Health)
  • Pensacola Museum of Art (College of Arts, Social Sciences, and Humanities)

At the conclusion of each trip, the employers and students are asked to complete a follow-up survey seeking feedback related to their experience.

The students are also asked about their confidence levels in their ability to effectively communicate with a potential employer prior to the event and then again at the conclusion of the event.

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In addition, 100% of students indicated they would recommend the Career Road Trips to other students and had the following to say about their experiences:

“The PMA road trip was a very eye opening experience. By seeing the behind the scenes of the museum, I learned that it takes an extensive collaborative effort to keep the institution afloat. This trip showed me that I would enjoy working in a museum type atmosphere. The networking opportunities were a tremendous help as well, it allowed me to gain valuable volunteer and internship experience to add to my resume.”-Pensacola Museum of Art Career Road Trip Attendee

“The Career Road Trip to the PMA provided me the opportunity to get an in depth, behind the scenes look at gallery studies and what it’s like to work in an art gallery. Although I am studying to be a practicing artist rather than an art historian, this opportunity opened my eyes to what a career in this particular field entails and gave me the opportunity to build relationships with influential community figures and potential mentors.”- Pensacola Museum of Art Career Road Trip Attendee

Employers also had very positive things to say about their experiences with the Road Trips:

“We feel that the road trip was a positive experience for both the students and the staff. The students were professional and motivated. We look forward to having those students take an active role in the museum and our relationship with future career service road trips.” –Pensacola Museum of Art

“Working to coordinate this event with Tim was seamless, and our employees were eager and willing to take time out of their day to speak with UWF undergraduate students. Our employees had great feedback from being involved with the event and are looking forward to the next opportunity.” –Andrew’s Institute for Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine

For more information on the Career Road Trips or our College Liaison Model, please feel free to contact me at jhill2@uwf.edu 

 

Annual Conference Update: Logo Reveal

2017 logo

I am excited to share the 2017 Annual Conference Logo with you and offer a few words sharing what it has become to mean to me.

The Webster’s New World College Dictionary offers several meanings for the term bridge. Conventionally, a bridge is a structure built over a river, railroad, highway, etc. to provide a way across for vehicles or pedestrians. Having the good fortune of living most of my life in Tampa and, here recently, moved to Chattanooga, Tennessee, bridges have been a constant.

sunshine skywaydowntown tampa

Sunshine Skyway Bridge                                       Downtown Tampa

looking into chattanooga

Looking into Downtown Chattanooga from the North Shore

A second meaning offered is more active—here, a bridge is a thing that provides connection, contact, or transition. The dictionary contextualizes this second meaning with the following illustrative statement: a common language is a bridge between cultures.

Those of us fortunate to work in recruiting/campus relations or in career services recognize the important role we play in our organizations. In addition to serving in external-facing roles for our employers, we also have unique knowledge of navigating important processes and resources within. This unique knowledge is often our ability to guide others around common obstacles (thus, the conventional meaning of bridge).

The programming committee, under the leadership of Kim Franklin, has selected a very strong set of breakout sessions and roundtable discussions serving as a Bridge to Career Success. I believe that you’ll be challenged to consider new approaches in connecting students with employers through sustained engagement with the Career Center and other campus/community-based partners. I am also confident that you’ll be able to meet & discuss emerging trends with our vendor contacts. Thirdly, the Florida ACE Board wants to create opportunities for its members to transition to progressive levels of responsibility and impact by offering a generous amount of networking time with senior leaders in the field.

Lastly, I hope that you’ll do a few things—think of these as an investment if you will.

  1. Register for the Conference – I look forward to the Florida ACE Conference every year because of the very high quality of the information and interaction offered there. National and Regional Conferences are rewarding as well, but the scope, scale and pace of this Conference are three reasons I keep coming back. We recognize that there are competing pressures for financial and developmental resources—we appreciate your consideration!
  2. Prepare for the Conference – After registering for the Conference, many of us will look after our travel accommodations and set up your out of office message for June 14-16. Spend some time thinking through the areas that you might help others (strengths) and areas that you’d like to develop more skill. You might even consider talking with your supervisor, colleagues, and direct reports about what you or your organization might need going forward.
  3. Advocate for the Conference – Simple steps like promoting the Conference Logo and URL on your organization’s website or within your e-mail signature will increase the visibility and impact of this Association and event. Lending your influence in digital spaces is also valuable…look for #FloridaACE17 on your preferred socials and add to the conversation.
  4. Volunteer for the Conference – After you’ve completed the three previous steps, don’t stop there. Intentionally look to get involved at the Conference. We have a need for room hosts and door prizes. We also have flexibility—pitch me your idea and I will work to get you connected to an opportunity.

Again, I am excited to be a member of this Association and look forward to welcoming each of you to Tampa this June!

Rob Liddell
Vice President & Conference Chair
Florida Association of Colleges and Employers

Message from the President: Conference updates, award nomination deadline and more!

By Alicia Smyth, 2016-17 FloridaACE President
President@Florida-ACE.org

3c05226By now you’re likely in the midst of recruiting season. Either you are busy attending career fairs and sorting through candidates or you are hosting companies on campus and planning career events. Either way, I’m sure you are looking forward to summer!

CONFERENCE UPDATES:

Speaking of summer, registration is now open for the 2017 FloridaACE Annual Conference! This year’s event will take place June 14-16 at the beautiful Saddlebrook Resort & Spa in Wesley Chapel, FL (just north of Tampa). Our theme this year is Bridges and our programming and events will be focused primarily around bridging gaps and building connections.

We took your feedback from last year’s conference into careful consideration and are adding an additional roundtable session into the programming. We will also host a coffee meet-up on Thursday morning and offer several pre-conference options (registration coming soon).

Attending the conference? Book your room now to avoid increased rates! Rooms are available on a first-come, first serve basis at Saddlebrook Resort & Spa in Wesley Chapel, FL. A block of rooms has been reserved for June 13-17 at the rate of $135/night for a one-bedroom suite, free wi-fi, discounted overnight self-parking rate for $12 per vehicle per night ($7 daily rate). We also have a very limited number of two bedroom suites available at the rate of $215/night. All rooms are upgraded and have a full kitchen, living room, dining area, and patio. You can find hotel booking information on our website.

Visit the FloridaACE website to register as a conference attendee or exhibitor, view the at-a-glance schedule, become a President’s Council Sponsor, or fill out the Roundtable Proposal Form. Keynote speakers will be announced soon and those individuals who submitted a program proposal will be informed within the next few weeks.

Pricing Information:

floridaace-prices

 

 

 

 

OPPORTUNITIES FOR GRADUATE STUDENTS

One of our goals for this year is to create ways for graduate students to engage with FloridaACE in an affordable and beneficial way. We will be offering a discounted rate for graduate students (see pricing above). To be eligible for this rate, graduate students must be willing to commit 2-5 hours of volunteer service to the association before or during the conference. Graduate students must be full-time, not currently employed in their field, and studying in a related discipline. Organizations have the opportunity to sponsor a graduate student one of two ways: a) registering them for the conference (if pre-selected) or b) selecting the option on the President’s Council form (if you would like the Awards Committee to select the recipient).

DEADLINE FOR AWARD NOMINATIONS

The deadline to nominate an exemplary individual for the Brownlee Leadership Award, New Member Award or Student of the Year Award is Friday, March 3rd! More information can be found on the website.

CONGRATULATIONS

Please join me in congratulating Vice President and Conference Chair, Rob Liddell! Rob just started a new job as Director of Career Services at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. Rob’s new employer is allowing him to continue on the FloridaACE board for the remainder of his term.

If you have questions about the conference or if you would like to join a conference planning committee, you can reach Rob at vice.president@florida-ace.org.

I hope you have a fun and rewarding semester and I hope to see you in June at Saddlebrook!