May 2019

May 24, 2019 – PALM BEACH COUNTY, FL – Yesterday, the Business Development Board of Palm Beach County (BDB)’s boardroom was packed with human resource professionals from diverse backgrounds for Palm Beach State College’s Human Resource Business Partnership Council, an initiative that allows Human Resource representatives to openly discuss what’s working and what needs improvement in recruitment efforts at Palm Beach State College.

The PBSC HR Business Partnership Council plans to establish workplace experiences, which will ultimately lead to job readiness skills for PBSC students through job shadowing and employer site tours. Another goal of the council is to ensure that there’s customized, offsite training offered to businesses. This is a proactive way for the college to determine what types of programs are in high demand from companies for the Corporate & Continuing Education programs. The 2019 SHRM Learning System is a great resource through PBSC that will customize certifications and come to the company’s office to instruct the classes. It’s literally on-demand, on-site skills instructed based on business needs. 

Yesterday’s meeting brought in a local company that’s currently in the hiring process to encourage an open dialogue setting where participants can ask vital questions about best practices. In attendance was Shay Berman, a local entrepreneur that started his company with just nine employees and has grown his workforce to 101 within four years. “When I started my company, my dream was to hire young people and give them opportunities,” said Shay Berman, Founder and CEO of Digital Resource. He stated that he chose this area because of the business environment and that he hires 100 percent locally. He shared with the group how he’s maintained a favorable company culture for his millennial workforce, while still keeping human resource policies in effect. 

The council also brought in a successful program at Palm Beach State College that’s established a solid career pipeline with local employers for recruiting and hiring. PBSC’s Public Safety Program provides reality based learning in its 143,000 sq. ft. center and is the largest of its kind in Pam Beach County. “We started a pipeline with the School District of Palm Beach County to introduce students to fire rescue,” said Barbara Cipriano, Associate Dean of Public Safety at PBSC. “We also have a lot of visitors come to the campus to see what’s happening in the public safety program. These are opportunities for future employers to see what’s happening in the classroom.”

To facilitate connections and make necessary introductions within the group, the Business Development Board is chair of the group and plans to continue fostering the growth of workforce development in Palm Beach County. This effort directly aligns with the BDB’s education initiatives such as Claim Your Future Showcase, Academic Leaders Council, Palm Beach County Internship Expo, and the PBC Workforce Analysis Study. “Education and economic development go hand in hand. Building a solid talent pipeline will help with the BDB’s recruitment, retention, and expansion efforts,” said Shereena Coleman, VP of Existing Industry & the Glades Region. The Vice Chair of the group is Maria Figueroa, Human Resource Manager at the Palm Beach County Board of County Commissioners. 

Human Resource and PBSC representatives present in the meeting included:

  • Justin Blum, Senior HR Manager, Pratt & Whitney / UTC
  • Tory Brown, Senior Talent Manager, Carrier / UTC
  • Karen Cover, Career Center Manager, PBSC
  • Maria Figueroa, HR Manager, PBC Board of County Commissioners 
  • Sherly Gitterman, Director of Human Resources, Manor Care / Heartland
  • Michelle Hough, Director of Human Resources, Jupiter Hills Club
  • Nikole Konieczny, CCE Program Director, PBSC
  • Ebony Lamar, Workforce Development Program Coordinator, PBSC
  • Mandy Long, Director of Training & Operational Excellence, The Club at Ibis
  • Aimee Mangold, Vice President of Human Resources, Kolter Hospitality
  • Peggy Myers, Human Resources Director, Levatas

The group plans to meet each month to ensure that they’re ahead of the game for best practices in job recruitment efforts. 



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